PiPP will be taking a short break to recover from a tumultuous year, and get ready for 2016. This article reflects on the highs and lows of the year just past (and there is loads more content to look back on throughout the site). We will be back on deck in mid January. To all our readers we wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
From 23-27 November 2015, secondary students from Vanuatu, Fiji and Solomon Islands came together in Port Vila to vie for the title of Melanesian school debating champions. Topics included governing systems, climate change, poverty, peacekeeping, and international diplomacy.
Throughout the week students impressed the audience and adjudicators with their eloquence and understanding of key regional and international issues. Faced with some of the same themes debated in parliaments around the Pacific, the students demonstrated great potential as future leaders.
This is a transcript of Jonathan Guyant's statement at the grand final of the Melanesian School Debate competition, staged last week in Port Vila. Jonathan was the first speaker of the Vanuatu team arguing against the motion that Melanesia must globalise to succeed. He was awarded Best Speaker for the debate final.
This week Commonwealth leaders are meeting in Malta for their biennial heads of government meeting. One of the first items of business will be the selection of the next Secretary General and with the field wide open, Pacific islands countries could be the king (or queen) maker.
Pacific nations engage with the UN on many levels, but are left out of the most important UN body, the UNSC. Ben Bohane asks whether the Pacific needs to challenge the system to get a permanent voice at the highest table.