IBEDUL’s closing address Palau Constitution Day, 2010

By Ibedul Yutaka M. Gibbons

Reklai, good morning to you, members of Bai ra Melekeong, re Mechesil  tial Beluu. It is indeed good to be joined with you here in Melekeok, at this magnificent site with which you have bequeathed to our government, and our new Capitol on which ground we can witness the wonderful and miraculous beauty of our island of Palau.

Let me also extend warm greetings to you, Ebil Reklai, Bilung and the eldership of Melekeok women, members of the Senate, the House, the Governors, and to all the peoples of Palau. Today is a special day. Today is the 30th anniversary of the Constitution of our Republic.

It is indeed an honor for me to be present here, with fellow members of the Council of Chiefs, His Excellency – President, First Lady, Chief Justice Arthur Ngirakelsong, Vice-President, Ministers to the President, the new Charge d’ Affairs of the United States, and to you, Ambassador Maggie Tien, it is an honor and a pleasure to have you join us for the celebration of our Constitution Day. I also want to recognize and thank those students who have worked hard to draft a Youth Constitution. ‘Chief justice, kemo check er ngii en mekngit al bol replace er tial Uchetemel a Llach elak dodengei, el blal saing er ngii a President ma Vice.

I would also like to offer a word of thanksgiving to the organizers of this event who have endeavored to make this day possible for all of us. Most of all, to God be the glory for his grandiose creation – especially us. He has protected us through the years and enabled us to see this day so that together, we can celebrate our special day – Constitution Day of the Republic of Palau.

Much have been said by those who have spoken before me, so I will be brief – let me wish all of us a blessed day. I want to extend a heartfelt gratitude, to the framers of our Constitution, one of whom is our President who was one of the leaders. He became the vice-president for the first Constitutional Convention, and then president for the second. I understand they worked tirelessly; there were neither seismic stirring nor aftershocks. All things considered, new and innovative ideas were reborn – our true identity as Palauan people deeply rooted in our traditional and cultural heritage rose up to meet with ideals of democracy creating for us a new nation – where our Palauan legacy and democratic values join forces in the pursuit of good and just governance.

So let us move forward in peace, holding on to the spirit of unity and cooperation – bridging support to one another. Let us not denounce the other by saying,  “you have no right to do this and you have no authority for this”. And then empower another with, “you have this authority and that control.”  Instead, let us all come together with one heart, sharing ideas and joining hands – working in partnership for Palau our beloved nation – for our children, and for the children.

Again, let me express, on behalf of the all peoples of Palau, our warm and sincere greetings to our fellow countrymen/women in the hospital, and those others at home who are not doing very well. To our young people in prison, may they recognize their transgressions and receive help and healing enabling them to re-enter into our society in the near future.

In closing, let me reiterate my request to the Council of Chiefs, Rubekul Belau,  the Mechesil Belau, and these our government leaders – our Congress to work together in unity, and in harmony maintaining and bridging support to each other and to the people of Palau today and in the days to come.

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