Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

Susaia heads FSM's TC&I

PALIKIR, Pohnpei (FSM Information Service): February 11, 2002 - Akillino Harris Susaia, on the morning of February 5, was sworn into office as Federated States of Micronesia's new Secretary for the Department of Transportation, Communications and Infrastructure (TC&I).

Nominated by President Leo A. Falcam in mid January, Susaia was confirmed during FSM Congress recent Special Session concluded last month. His predecessor, former Secretary Lambert N. Lokopwe, had resigned last year for personal reasons.

Susaia was sworn into Office by Henry Biza, Associate Justice of Pohnpei State. Witnesses included, President Falcam and his Cabinet, national government officials, Speaker Feliciano M. Perman and members of the Pohnpei State Legislature, Sokehs Chief Magistrate - Richard Susaia, Kolonia Town Mayor - Marcello Peterson, families and close friends.

The President welcomed the Secretary on board and advised him of the great challenges in store for him since his responsibilities encompass the whole physical state of FSM - air, land and sea, from the State of Kosrae to the State of Yap. Also, given the geographical disparity of the nation, President Falcam stated that TC&I is the department that brings the four states together.

President Falcam expressed his confidence in the Secretary's ability to shoulder his responsibilities and contribute to the development of the nation. President's nomination letter to Congress had expressed his faith," the well-rounded experience of Mr. Susaia qualifies him to lead the Department of [TC&I] and I am confident of [his] abilities."

Susaia graduated from the University of Oregon in 1993 with both a Master's Degree in Public Administration and a Bachelor's in Political Science. Susaia's career history began in late 70's working as a Legislative Aide in the newly established Pohnpei State Legislature (PSL) and went on to become the Budget Officer for the PSL in 1988.

Throughout his career history, Susaia had continuously pursued educational goals ranging from Economics at the University of South Pacific to Kapiolani College's paralegal program to final stop at the University of Oregon.

After his educational quest, Susaia returned home and continued working for the Pohnpei State Legislature until his appointment in 1996 as General Manager of Pohnpei Port Authority. A position that among other responsibilities, included management and implementation of regulations of safe and efficient operations of air and seaports of Pohnpei State.

Susaia's new responsibilities parallel his former position, but on a national scale. The Department of TC&I is responsible for the regulation and management of FSM's sea and air transport - interstate and international, this includes the operations of vessels and aircrafts belonging to or controlled by the National Government.

The Department is also responsible for the regulations of radio frequency spectrum in accordance with national and international laws. In addition, his department oversees and manages the construction and maintenance of national government structures.

Except the newest addition, the President's Cabinet remains:

  • Dept. of Economic Affairs - Sebastian Anefal
  • Dept. of Finance & Administration - John Ehsa
  • Dept. of Foreign Affairs - Ieske K. Iehsi
  • Dept. of Health Education & Social Affairs - Eliuel K. Pretrick
  • Dept. of Justice - Paul E. McIlrath
  • Dept. of Transportation, Communication & Infrastructure - Akillino H. Susaia
  • Office of the Public Defender - Beauleen C. Worswick

Throughout his employment Susaia's civic duties included, serving as a Board member of the Micronesian Fisheries Authority, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Pohnpei Visitors Bureau and he was a delegate during the Kolonia Town Constitutional Convention.

Susaia is married to former Mihpel Olter of Pohnpei and they have four children: Ricky, Clara, Einstein and Shallane.

For further information on this release, please contact:

FSM Office of the President
Public Information: Press, Radio, Video
P.O Box 34
Palikir Station, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel.: (691) 320-2548/2092
Fax.: (691) 320-4356