Prime Minister Welcomes Pacific Heads of Health to Samoa: Keynote Address

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Excellencies, 

Regional Director of the WHO Western Pacific Region’s Office, Dr. Saia Ma’u  Piukala, 

Ministers of cabinet, 

Director General of SPC, 

Heads of Health from respective Pacific Island Countries 

Representatives of International Bodies, 

Members of the Diplomatic Corps, 

Ladies and Gentlemen, 

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you most cordially to the official  opening of the Pacific Heads of Health meeting here in Samoa. 

This meeting is the first-ever Pacific Heads of Health meeting to be held in Samoa, and I, on behalf of the Samoa government, am grateful to the  leadership of the Pacific Community for considering Samoa as the host of this  important meeting. 

This annual forum is a golden opportunity for Pacific Heads of Health to  share, discuss, and network to improve health services and health throughout the Pacific Islands. It is also an opportunity to make  recommendations on regional health priorities and issues that need to be  tabled at the upcoming 16th Pacific Health Minister’s Meeting in 2025. That  meeting will be held here in Apia. 

I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere appreciation to  the World Health Organization through the Regional Director and SPC for  the enthusiasm and support both technically and financially to make this  important meeting happen. 

To the Regional Director of the Western Pacific Region, Dr. Saia Ma’u Piukala, may I join the participants of this meeting in congratulating you on  your designation as Regional Director for WHO Western Pacific Region and on being the first person of Pacific descent to hold this prestigious post. I am  proud that Samoa, through our Minister of Health, rallied to make your  appointment a historical occasion for our Pacific family.  

To all Heads of Health of the Pacific, I sincerely show my deepest gratitude  for your joint efforts and commitment to attend this meeting. You are the  health leaders behind the leaders of our governments for making sound  decisions that contribute to promoting the health and well-being of our  people.

A Healthy Pacific is our collective goal. Your sharing and  deliberations in these three days, will further strengthen our health systems  and shape Pacific healthy nations in the future. 

I sincerely hope that by the end of this meeting, you will be able to achieve  the set objectives and expected outcomes. However, do not forget to take a  break, enjoy our Samoan hospitality, and see a bit of our country. 

Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, let me express my most sincere wish that the discussions and agreements resulting from this three-day  meeting, will positively contribute to the health developments of our Pacific  Nations.  

I now declare the Pacific Heads of Health meeting officially open. Soifua ma ia manuia.