Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

Kosrae team wins Law Day debate 2007

Palikir, POHNPEI (FSM Supreme Court): July 27, 2007 - The 2007 FSM law day was successfully held in Colonia, Yap on July 12, 2007. Kosrae State won the 2007 national debate, Chuuk was the first runner-up and Pohnpei and Yap tied for third position.

The FSM law day was first organize and held on July 12, 1991 to commemorate the first ten years of existence of the supreme court of the FSM. It has since become an annual activity of the court. Each year, a coordinating committee is appointed comprising employees of the court and one member is appointed by the President of the FSM and one appointed by the Speaker of Congress.

Also each year, the committee explores a number of possible topics of national significance to be debated by high school students throughout the Federated States of Micronesia. This year the topic selected by the committee was: "be it resolved that the FSM Constitution be amended to provide for an office of special prosecutor for the Federated States of Micronesia."

Each year a state championship debate in held in each state to determine which school should represent that state in the national debate championship. The state champion debaters representing the State of Kosrae were Ms. Evangeline Ching and Ms. Sepe Waguk from Kosrae high school and Ms. Martha Timothy was their coach. Representing the state of Pohnpei were Mr. Hetler Ham and Mr. Darwin Shelten from Madolenihmw high school and Ms. Mayumi Albert was their coach. Representing the State of Chuuk were Ms. Lorraine Enlet and Ms. Adina Ruben from Berea Christian high school and Mr. Joe Enlet was their coach. And representing the host state of yap were Ms. Valynna Gippen and Ms. Jerica Buthungligorad from Yap high school and Mr. Joselito Despi was their coach. Each of the student debaters in the national debate will receive from the FSM court not less than $1,000.00 in scholarship for their post secondary education at a higher institution of their choosing.

The national debate held on July 12 of each year is important because it gives the high school students an opportunity to involve themselves with the legal system and it also gives an opportunity to the general public to get involve in issues of national significant for the FSM. For a nation of law there is no title higher than that of citizens.

The President of the Federated States of Micronesia, His Excellency Manny Mori proclaimed July 12, 2007, in recognition of the significant events that have occurred in the history of this country on the 12th of July, a nation founded on the principals of democracy, as law day in the FSM and urged all citizens, residents, government agencies, and other organizations to join in recognizing law day 2007 as another historic event in our nation's history.

The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the FSM, the Honorable Andon l. Amaraich, Governor of Yap State, the Honorable Sebastian Anefal, Speaker of the Yap State Legislature, Chief Justice of the Yap State Court, Chief Justice of the Kosrae State Court, and the Republic of Palau Ambassador to Taiwan, the Honorable Johnson Toribiong were among the dignitaries attended the 2007 FSM law day activities. The Governor of Yap delivered the welcoming remarks followed by a special remark by the Vice Speaker of the Seventh Yap State Legislature, the Honorable Sabino Sauchomal. The Honorable Martin G. Yinug, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the FSM in Yap, delivered the closing remarks concluding the opening ceremony. The first semi-final debate followed the opening ceremony between Pohnpei for the proposition and Kosrae against the proposition. The second semi-final debate was between Yap for the proposition and Chuuk against the proposition. In the final debate in the afternoon, Chuuk argued for the proposition while Kosrae again argued against the proposition. Debaters representing Kosrae won the 2007 national debate, Chuuk was the first runner-up and Pohnpei and Yap tied for third position.

In addition to the debate this year, the embassy of the United States of America in collaboration with the Supreme Court of the FSM sponsored an essay contest of all high school students in the FSM on the topic of "why should I vote in elections?" The winners of the essay contest was Mr. Vincent Neth of Xavier High School in Chuuk and the winning essay was read out on national radio on July 12, 2007 in Colonia, Yap.

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