THE Savo and Russell Islands People’s Empowerment Network (SRIPEN) was officially launched on Saturday November 10, 2018 at Pokilo Village, Savo Island.
SRIPEN Executive team, representative of the Savo House of Chiefs, community elders, leaders of Savo 13 communities and general community members attended the event and witnessed the official launching. The occasion recorded more than 100 people.
At the presentation of SRIPEN, the patron George Saemane who is one of the core founders shared the long journey and many attempts to bring the people of Savo together.
“We call ourselves different names over the last 20 years but that does not matter now, this year for the first time, we were able to bring other Savo Islanders and our wantoks from the Russell Islands under the SRIPEN Banner.”
In May 2018, SRIPEN has adopted its Constitution, registered the group as a charitable entity, called a general meeting and elected its executive members in October and now successfully launched the network.
The huge part of SRIPEN mandate is to; be a social movement that will solicit professional advice from international and national professionals in enhancing village focused development on Savo and Russell Islands; to train, develop and prepare Savo and Russell Island leaders for effective leadership and service; to solicit financial and other assistance from international, internal donors for village development purposes, to provide researched advice to Savo and Russell Island cultural, church and political leaders to made educated decisions; to as much as possible facilitate village development from national funding.
At the formal launching, Fr Ishmael Taisi did the ordination blessing of SRIPEN followed by the proclamation launching statement made by the president of SRIPEN, George Pego.
“Today on the day of Saturday, November 10, 2018, I pronounce the launching of, Savo and Russell Islands people’s empowerment network (SRIPEN),” Mr Pego declares.
As the president, Pego further alludes he is more than excited on the successive mile stones the network has achieved in this year alone.
“We have adopted our constitution, have a fully function board members and with the launching of SRIPEN, I am enthusiastically looking forward for all the work the group will be doing for the common good of Savo and Russells people, he stated.
“Part of the vision for SRIPEN is to somehow work in close collaboration with the Member of Parliament for Savo & Russells constituency. This partnership will be taken seriously to ensure issues within constituency are addressed and sprout of developments materialised 2019 onwards,” Pego added.
In his closing remarks he encourage everyone to work together to achieve the aspiration of SRIPEN.
The SRIPEN executive is planning to hold two other launchings, one in Russell Island and another in Honiara in 2019.