On Wednesday 27, January – Senator Hilda C. Heine was elected the President after the opposition successfully ousted President Nemra through a motion of no confidence.
The ousted Government was unable to put a nomination for the election of a new President. With only one nomination – questions were raised whether the Speaker should declare Hilda Heine by acclamation. After some debate, the Nitijela opted to cast ballot as per the language of the Constitution which requires that the President be elected by secret ballot.
The Nitijela members casted 24 votes out of 30 members who were present and voted. President Hilda Heine is the first female President of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and certainly the first for any independent Pacific Island country. She was sworn before Judge Milton Zackios on Thursday, 28 in the Cabinet.
Pursuant to Article V, Section 8(2) of the Constitution, the President shall appoint her Ministers within the next 30 days with the revocation of the current Ministerial portfolios, followed by allocation of new ones.