REPORT FROM SENATE MAJORITY-- Newly elected Republic of Marshall Islands President Christopher Loeak and First Lady Anono Lieom Loeak made their inaugural visit to Hawaii on February 2, 2012. President Loeak and his delegation met with Governor Neil Abercrombie as well as other state officials. While meeting with officials, President Loeak discussed issues relating to the Compact of Free Association and to reaffirm the RMI government's commitment towards a mutually beneficial outcome to the significant issues.
"I would like to thank the people of Hawaii for their hospitality during my visit," said Republic of Marshall Islands President Christopher Loeak. "Hawaii is such a beautiful place and we can see why many of our residents have chosen to make their home here. I thank the people of Hawaii for opening their hearts to them and for their generous compassion."
"This was a wonderful opportunity to strengthen ties with the government of the Republic of the Marshall Islands as well as forge a relationship with their newly elected president," said Senator J. Kalani English, Chair of the Senate Committee on Transportation and International Affairs. Last month, Senator English was invited by the United Nations Development Programme to conduct an Induction Seminar for the Nitjela (Parliament) of Marshall Islands in Majuro. The seminar was intended to support members and assist them in identifying a better use of the parliamentary process to support the delivery of Government services. Senator English spoke on topics including, responsible government, leadership roles, the role of the majority party and the importance of committee hearings.
Prior to being elected to the Hawaii State Legislature, Senator English worked at the United Nations in New York. He continues to be active with the organization, which has enabled him to be invited to participate in seminars such as the Induction Seminar for the Republic of the Marshall Islands' Nitjela (Parliament).
"It is fulfilling to be able to help other countries improve their democratic system," said Senator English.
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