The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration has appointed Talissa Koteka as the Small Island States (SIS) Officer on a three month contract. In Koteka’s role as SIS Officer, she will be responsible for implementing Regional priorities and supporting the work programme of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat in country.
Koteka recently graduated from The University of Otago in Dunedin with a Bachelors of Law (LLB) & a Bachelors of Commerce (BCom) in 2014. She later gained admission as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand in October.
“I saw this as an opportunity to start my professional career in a Ministry that really interests me. Foreign Affairs has always been a Ministry that I have wanted to work in. As the SIS Officer, I get my foot in the door and gain experience.”
Koteka is enthusiastic about the role as she has been eager to move back to Rarotonga permanently since completing university.
“Moving back home has been a goal for me. I’ve always wanted to do it. This job just convinces me that it’s worth it.”
The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat is based in Suva, Fiji. The Secretariat’s mandate is delivered through the annual Leaders’ Communiqués and high level ministerial meeting decisions. The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat is the international organisation established by treaty, enjoying legal personality in each of its sixteen member countries, one of them being the Cook Islands.
Koteka departs for Fiji this weekend to participate in a one week SIS Officer workshop in Suva where she will learn about the overall development of the Smaller Island States, and in particular how to facilitate and coordinate the effective implementation and progress of the decisions of SIS and Forum Leaders here in the Cook Islands.