In a letter dated June 14, 2022, to the FSM Secretary of Justice, Hon. Joses Gallen Sr. Esq., Acting Governor, Hon. Christina Elnei officially responded to the FSM National Government, particularly the President of the FSM’s June 12, 2022, Decree “directing that high traditional leaders are permitted to home quarantine upon repatriation into Pohnpei and other FSM states”.
In her letter, Acting Governor Elnei expressed her regret that the Decree assigns fault to Pohnpei for not preparing the Pohnpei quarantine units prior to the recent repatriation of June 12, 2022. Her letter references consultations between Pohnpei State Government and the FSM National Government to delay repatriation, and that only 38 rooms were ready to receive repatriates when over 70 passengers arrived. The result was what Acting Governor Elnei called “chaos upon arrival”.
Acting Governor Elnei’s letter summarizes the legal action that FSM National Government has taken against the Pohnpei State Government regarding the use of the certificate of qualified entry (CQE) form. She said while the court agreed with the FSM National Government that only FSM has the power to admit people into the FSM, the court went further:
“…….although once admitted, the state has full police powers including those over health and public safety, and can require arrival to quarantine for whatever length of time is medically necessary.”
Acting Governor Elnei asked the National Government to allow Pohnpei State the liberty to carry out its constitutional responsibilities and continue to handle incoming passengers to Pohnpei in constant collaboration with the National Government. In closing, Acting Governor Elnei requested “As Pohnpeians, let us work together amicably in serving our people.”
The letter in full is posted below: