Vice President Alik L. Alik Addresses the Micronesian Endowment for Historic Preservation and Consultation Conference
Palikir, POHNPEI (Office of NACH/FSM Information Services): August 13, 2008 - The Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) Vice President, Honorable Alik L. Alik, addressed the 29th Micronesian Endowment for Historic Preservation (MEHP) and Consultation meetings at the Cliff Rainbow Hotel during the opening on August 11, 2008. Pohnpei State Historic Preservation Office hosts this year's MEHP and Consultation meetings.
The Honorable Vice President Alik L. Alik joined the Governor of Pohnpei State, the Honorable John Ehsa, in welcoming the delegations from Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Island (CNMI), the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), the four states of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), the Republic of Palau (ROP), and the USA to Pohnpei and FSM.
He added that the FSM National Government will do its best, as a co-host of the conference, to ensure that the conference is successfully accommodated.
Vice President Alik reminded the conference participants that as Micronesians face the opportunities and the challenges of globalization and modernization, the task and responsibilities of conserving, preserving, and protecting our unique cultural traditions and historic heritage become more challenging yet fundamentally necessary to all aspects of our political, economic, and social development and wellbeing. The Vice President cautioned that, as resources, the cultural and historic heritage in the FSM is non-renewable and diverse. Therefore, we must be very careful when we undertake planning for the use and protection of these resources.
According to Vice President Alik, both he and President Manny Mori recognize the need for the historic and cultural preservation office to be more involved in the policy-making processes. In that regard they established the Office of the National Archives, Culture and Historic Preservation as a cabinet level office during the early stage of their administration.
"The construction of a cultural center that will house the national archives office and serve as a national museum is in the planning stage". The Vice President added.
He concluded his remark with a request; "we are grateful for the much needed historic preservation funding support that comes from the Environmental Sector of the Compact." He requests "that our Federal grant partners, the Environmental Sector grant managers and staff, and the Historic Preservation Officers of the states and the national government work together to secure this needed Compact funding support".
In addition to extending a warm greeting to the conference participants, Governor Ehsa pointed out the need to develop the historic and cultural resources for the benefit of all. The importance of the MEHP and consultation meeting cannot be emphasized. He wished the participants a resourceful meeting.
Mr. Hank Florence, Chief, National Register Programs and Ms. Paula Falk-Creech, Program Manager for Micronesia and Polynesia represent the National Park Service, Department of the Interior. Once a year they consult with the Historic Preservation Officers of the Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of Palau, Republic of the Marshall Islands, the island of Guam, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands regarding the progress of their Historic Preservation programs and other matters. All of the preservation programs in the Freely Associated States of Micronesia (FAS), the island of Guam and CNMI receive varying levels of funding support from U.S. Government through Historic Preservation Fund grant.
The participants will visit the famous and potential world heritage site of Nan Madol on August 15 before concluding the meeting on August 16, 2008.
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