The Winter Solstice is one of the most formative and transformative times for the State of Sandus. This darkest day becomes, for us, a beckoning of hope and the return of light: a process which continues here on in until 26 May when the Winter-Spring cycle is completed with the anniversary of Sandus’s creation. Today, the Solstice, is a very festive day: it is the day in which light is reborn and, with it, so is the State of Sandus’s activity for cultural building in the new Gregorian, Sancta, and administrative years. As each administrative day of the Equinoctes and the Solstices, this day culminates with a report on major statal affairs involving a report on charity taxes, reporting on major projects in the new quarter, and the awarding of the Most Honourable Throne of Sandus: however, this Solstice, the State of Sandus sees a major election and referendum.
And, without further delay, the Council referendum question has passed unanimously.
The 2014 Winter Solstice Elections lasted from 10 December to 20 December. Over the course of 10 days, four of the seven people eligible to vote by means of the right of suffrage voted; the two citizens ineligible to vote hail from the Kingdom of Überstadt, a sociliva state that does not possess suffrage. All votes cast unanimously approved the Sôgmô’s Re-election and the Council Referendum. Three ballots were cast in English; one in Sancta. Three votes were cast in the Sôgmô’s Re-election and four in the Council Referendum. This election has been a ground-breaking event in the State of Sandus as it marks two milestones: this election marks the first time the digital ballots and secret ballots (i.e., ballots with random identifier strings) were used.
Direct Democratic Council:
The plan for a new direct democratic Council has been ratified by 100% of the votes casted. The first meeting of the Council will be 4 January 2015, lasting approximately an hour, and discussing the formal powers of the Council — upon which the Sôgmô will present a platform for the transitional powers from a consultum to a lex. A calendar of the Council’s prescheduled meetings and the minutes of the Council shall be housed in a new archive entitled Annales Consilii; the pages for the Citizens’ Party and the Central People’s Government on Sandus.org shall be amended to reflect these constitutional changes.
The State of Sandus has a long tradition of charity throughout the year, but this past Autumn quarter of 2014 was one of the most charitable times in Sandus’s tradition of loving-kindness and philanthropy. Sandum citizens, around the world, take part in religious and political organisations, tutor students, conduct research for the betterment of humanity, volunteer at academic libraries, work jobs in social work, engage in ministry and spiritual counseling through media and theatre, continue their studies for the benefit of both themselves and the State of Sandus, and work for and on behalf of communities and peoples who suffer. In Autumn 2014, citizens of the State of Sandus have donated $99.77 USD to charity, ¥10,000 to temples and shrines, 104 hours of communal work, and took part in a live release of animals and insects — and much is yet unknown (this report with be updated as more numbers arrive). Causes donated to and volunteered for range from membership dues in religious and political organisations and fundraisers for organisations, to donations for the name change of a trans* person and giving on #GivingTuesday (first Tuesday in December).
Economic & Cultural Development in the Winter Quarter:
Spoken about at the CCPS Party Congress in November 2014 and written into the petitions in this year’s election, the Sôgmô will work with the Citizens’ Party of Sandus and the new Council to develop a concerted effort for economic development in the year 2015 — the year of the great Economic Goal. To fulfill these developments, the State of Sandus will: (1) work to develop a central Amazon store for all wares sold in the State of Sandus to foreign buyers; (2) prepare an annual budget to be published by the Sôgmô and the beginning of a Sandum fiscal year beginning in April; (3) seek both foreign and domestic sources for the State budget headed by the Bureau of the Treasury by fundraising, crowd-funding, and donation taxes from Sandum citizens; and (4) cooperate with SJEP member-states in preparing the Economic Pact’s website and a central repository for merchants there.
Awarding to the Most Honourable of the State:
This Solstice is a remarkable time for the honour of the State of Sandus: a time representative of the work of the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus (MHOTS). The Sandum Nation-State has rebounded since the 2012-2013 Citizenship Crisis and the most recent additions to the Sandum State, whether by Civila or Sociliva citizenship, have done a tremendous service to the State of Sandus by taking part in Congresses, Conferences, and — with hope for the future — the coming Council meetings. Unfortunately, this meetings that the merit of the Order must be upheld and, as a result, this Solstice must see the removal of M. André Sammut, a long-time Sandum citizen who left the State in the Citizenship Crisis in May 2013, from the Commander class of the Order. This having been done and announced, however, we turn to happier announcements.
While it might be the first time a member of the Order has been down-graded, it is also a rare occasion that three Sandum citizens today are recognised by being added to or promoted in the Order. These three citizens together form the bulk of Sandus’s activity in its new proto-Republican life as Sandus attempts to transition once more into a republic. These three have taken part in the last Congress of the Citizens’ Party, they form the confidants of the Sôgmô, and they have taken the burden of government on their shoulders.
Therefore, with the simple pomp and ceremony befitting of the circumstance of the Republic which they have helped to build by their actions, on behalf of the Sôgmô as Sovereign of the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus, in the Teachings of the Three Jewels and the Benedictions of all the Gods:
Akhilkumar Indurti and Hatsu Ryuho have been awarded the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus, Member class, in recognition of their building of the State of Sandus through participation in government, proposing solutions to Sandum crises, and advancing the Sandum cause of compassion and philanthropy throughout their areas of work and academic discipline.
Adam von Friedeck has been promoted to the Most Honourable Order of the Throne of Sandus, Commander class, in recognition for his work in the building of the Sandum Republic, his proposal for the role of the Party in the future, and his work as liaison and diplomatic representative of the State of Sandus.
Hatsu Ryuho, a Sandum sociliva citizen from Kumano, has lived now for approximately nine months in Japan, studying the Buddhist Dharma, learning the language, and practicing the skills necessary for being a faithful lay or ordained member of the Buddhist sangha. In these nine months, he has consciously critiqued elements of both his native and adoptive culture all while remaining, at heart, a good Buddhist. His philanthropic work while being a foreign student at a place of higher education in Japan is, to say the least, representative of the spirit of the Sandum Nation’s philosophy of compassion and revolutionary work. Thus, for the first time in the history of the State of Sandus and since this decree was enacted on 29 June 2012, the Sôgmô hereby awards the cognomen of ‘Caring’ to Hatsu Ryuho Cūrāns, or in any other language of his choosing.