26 July 2013
Well, as the excitement settles from what has been a truly remarkable series of events for the 19th MSG Summit held from 13-21 June, 2013 in Kanaky land, New Caledonia, I wish to warmly congratulate the FLNKS under the Leadership of Mr Victor Tutugoro, now the MSG Chair, for the impeccable efforts invested in ensuring the arrangements for the Summit were ready and in place before the Summit begun. All of them – the FLNKS Political Bureau, Customary Senate, all Chiefs, external unit, the Secretariat, the Provinces, all the communities in Kanaky land worked wonderfully well together and really hard to achieve a successful Summit.
I take my hat off to the FLNKS. They and their people deserve all the credit for a very successful 19th MSG Summit.
The 19th Summit was the most significant and substantial gathering of MSG Senior Officials, Foreign Ministers and Leaders at least in my time as Director General.
Some of the issues considered were sensitive and I’m glad our Leaders not only considered these issues with respect but they have stood tall together in protecting the unity of the Group. History may test their decisions but I believe their cognizance of the need to ensure the unity of the MSG is unimpaired ensures the perpetual integrity of the organization. That to me is fundamental and the Leaders were certainly prudent in their wisdom.
Going forward the FLNKS in the person of Mr Victor Tutugoro assumes the Chairmanship of the MSG. While it is the FLNKS’ turn to assume the Chair, the timing has been a welcome juncture as the FLNKS prepares for important events in 2014 that could very well affect the future political arrangement of the Territory. In 2014 will be an election for congress which could provide possibility of the FLNKS assuming, for the first time in the history of Kanaky-New Caledonia, the leadership of the Government. This is not too far- fetched to be impossible. Every indication would suggest this is a possibility and by assuming the MSG Chairmanship, the FLNKS is demonstrating they are as ready and capable as any other organization to take on leadership of governance of their land which is their undisputed birth-right. Also next year may see a referendum occurring which again could change the political landscape in Kanaky-land. The Summit has provided an opportunity for the FLNKS to show-case themselves and hopefully expand their support-base ahead of the elections and referendum next year. Our support and prayers remain with the FLNKS for successful outcomes in 2014.
Overall well done and congratulations once again to the FLNKS. You have done extremely well in your leadership of the Summit meetings and I pledge the full support of the MSG Secretariat to ensure you are able to discharge your role successfully as MSG Chair in the next two years. That is our commitment and promise.
Mr. Peter Forau
Former Director General, MSG Secretariat
(21 Sept 2011 - 31 December 2015)