Journalist Jason Abel of the Daily Post recently reported that the The Language Service Department (LSD) based at the Prime Minister’s Office compound has officially launched its first official website in Vanuatu.
The launching of the new website by LSD Director, Stewart Garae, was witnessed by Right To Information (RTI) officers and LSD staff. Mr. Garae said the achievement, which follows on the signing of the agreement between LSD and the Bible Society last week, is momentous. “It is the first website and a milestone,” he said. “Soon, our database will be ready, and it will be accessible through the website. This website is created in accordance with the RTI Act.”
He acknowledged the RTI office for allowing one particular officer, Mr. Kevin Valea, to assist LSD with its website contents. It coincides with the RTI act for information to be accessible by the public. “Once the LSD database is ready, in the first quarter of 2022, other government departments can also access their documents in all three official languages,” he said. “This is also another service provided within this website. Everyone can access the website.”
“I am encouraging the people of Vanuatu in all six provinces to visit the website and access the National Language Policy of the Republic of Vanuatu, created accordingly to the public’s requests and presented in Bislama, English and French. There is also a language policy department within LSD and the partnership agreement between LSD and the Bible society,” he said.
He acknowledged the technical advice provided by the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO), including the process of the website domain to the Telecommunications Radiocommunications and Broadcasting Regulator for approval. “The collaboration between LSD, OGCIO and RTI has resulted in this achievement,” he noted, acknowledging all LSD staff for their commitment and unity.”
He further acknowledged the Director General to the Prime Minister’s Office, Dr. Gregoire Nimbtik, for his blessing so the project could proceed and fulfill the LSD business plan. “Our first identity is language and this website consists of all three official languages,” Garae said. “This website will be more proactive once our database is accomplished and the establishment of Vanuatu’s terminology, including the National Language Council, for people to access its activities. This launching is the first part with more updates to follow.”
RTI officer Valea made a brief update on accessing the website contents and its functions, before the dedication by Vanuatu Christian Council representative, Pastor Solomon and refreshments to commemorate the accomplishment.
In Vanuatu, language is the first culture of an individual – his/her identity.