28 November, 2014 PiPP Staff Melanesian School Debate Melanesian School Debate 2014 in pictures Teams from Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea congregate in Port Morseby for the first Melanesian School Debate in November 2014. Yuriki Wei of Vanuatu presents her case against Papua New Guinea on the motion that ‘donors should decide how Pacific island countries spend their money.’ Team PNG is successful in their debate, defeating the Solomon Islands on the motion that ‘it is fair for Australia to negotiate with Pacific island countries to host asylum seekers.’ The adjudicators were given the challenging task on assessing the students based on their presentation, research and ability to respond to their opposition. Students from PNG come from several different provinces, selected through a very extensive national competition that has been held annually since 2009. Papua New Guinea set a high standard in the competition. Students from Vanuatu have been quick to pick up skills in debating, working together as a team to prepare and research for each debate. Members of the public come down to support the future leaders of the region in the grand final, with a debate motion that ‘natural resource extraction in the Pacific island countries has lead to immense wealth for it’s people.’ Team Papua New Guinea came away with the trophy for the first Melanesian School Debate after a tight contest with the Solomon Islands. The debate competition gave students an opportunity to engage with their fellow Melanesian brothers and sisters.