Monday, November 18, 2013

Vanuatu Cultural Centre commemorates Ambrym volcanic eruption century later

Director Abong Marcellin welcomes delegates. 
By Alcina Charlie, e-Marketing officer: On Friday 15th November 2013, I was invited to attend the opening of an exhibition to commemorate 100 years after the explosive eruptions of Mt Marum and Benbow on the island of Ambrym, which caused thousands to flee their home seeking safer refuge in neighboring Malekula and Epi islands,  as well as Efate where Melemaat village currently resides.
The ceremony started with a welcome speech to all delegates  including Government and Diplomatic VIPS, the Vanuatu Cultural Centre management and staff, invitees from other institutions and organizations, and the local media. In Mr Marcellin’s speech, he acknowledged the French New-Hebridean government for driving the evacuations, and following his speech was the launch officially declared by Director General of Internal Affairs, Mr George Bogiri. Mr Bogiri’s shared his story and said his connection to the event was through his late grandfather who worked on the ship that was moving people from Ambrym to the outer islands. On the walls of the exhibition area, precious memorabilia photographs taken during the time of the eruption were displayed for guests to view.The ceremony was closed with a word of prayer by Mrs Ann Naupa followed by refreshments. Mount Marum and Benbow continue to be Ambrym’s top natural attraction. The moonscape ash planes intrigue many visitors that go to trek up to the twin volcanoes.  The VTO would like to thank Vanuatu Cultural Centre for their ongoing support towards promoting  the detination. Visit