FSM President to provide teleconferencing equipment to state Governors to expand communications

State of Yap

Department of Youth & Civic Affairs


Colonia, Yap-  Governor Henry Falan of the State of Yap expressed his deep gratitude to FSM President David Panuelo for “all the assistance and support that your Administration has extended to your State of Yap in the midst of this pandemic crisis.” Dated March 26, 2020, the letter followed a meeting via phone conferencing the prior day between the two leaders.

The purpose of the meeting was “to discuss issues concerning Yap State’s needs during this crisis and for us to agree on ways to mutually move forward as a nation inclusive of the other three states.”

The outcomes of the meeting included the agreement for Yap to join its sister states, Chuuk and Pohnpei, in prohibiting the disembarkation of aircraft passengers until further notice. In a press release issued by the president’s office after the meeting, it was also announced that, “while aircraft may continue to arrive in Yap State for the delivery of cargo—and such continued cargo services are encouraged and welcomed—no individual regardless of origin may disembark from aircraft into the FSM States of Yap (as well as Chuuk and Pohnpei).”

Further, it was confirmed by President Panuelo during the meeting that, “in an effort to ensure the continued supply of essential goods and services, the 14-day delay for cargo and tanker vessels prior to entering the Nation is now rescinded. In lieu of the 14-day delay requirement, shipping lines must comply with extra health precaution measures supervised by the FSM State Departments of Health and Port Authorities. Fishing vessels licensed in the FSM and arriving into the Nation’s borders are still subject to their requirements, including 14-day quarantines.”

Governor Falan commended the president for his steadfastness in holding the nation together “in this very difficult time of combating this novel pandemic, most especially for taking the time to communicate with the four governors of the states to ensure that we all are in this combat together and must pull our efforts and resources concertedly.”

During the meeting, President Panuelo offered additional help to Yap State and the other states in setting up their own teleconferencing capability for use during the covid-19 crisis. The governor recommended using his conference room so that the president and the governors can “videoconference regularly” while also allowing the Health Crisis Task Forces in all four states to use the equipment to coordinate their efforts while travel is temporarily on hold.

Following the meeting, Carlson D. Apis, FSM Secretary of the Department of Transportation, Communication & Infrastructure, communicated via email with Leo Falcam Jr., Chief of Staff to President Panuelo, and Francis Itimai, Chief of Staff to Governor Falan, to put the plan in place for the immediate setup of the teleconferencing equipment.

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