Palau’s Entire SS Board Resigns Amid Tragic Boating Incident

The entire Board of Trustees for the Republic of Palau’s Social Security Administration today submitted their resignation to the President following the June 29, case 2014 boating tragedy that killed a 10-year old boy.

Four board members namely Chair Florencia Rirou, Secretary and Treasurer Johana Ngiruchelbad, Evalista Kyota and Francis Meyar each signed the August 4, 2014 resignation letter addressed to President Remengesau. Vice Chair Lillian Uludong’s signature was not included in the letter as she is currently off island.
In their letter to the President, the board members expressed that they approved the SS celebration for the agency’s 46th anniversary “for the purpose of acknowledging the wonderful team of people who work hard each day for the success of the Social Security Administration.”
However the day that was “intended for celebration” became a tragedy when Brien Simer’s actions, the SS Administrator’s husband, led to the death of 10-year old Jonas Markub.
“We concede to your wisdom that we, as a management team, accept responsibility for this unfortunate incident that was beyond our control”, expressed the members in their letter.
In early July, Rirou and Uludong attended the oversight hearing conducted by the House of Delegates Ways and Means Committee to answer questions related to the incident.
During the hearing, lawmakers raised questions and concerns regarding the issue of liability, which the members admitted to have not discussed beyond their initial meeting with their legal counsel.