Thursday, 30 April 2009 12:46 AM

Compansation Claimers

This topic had attracted interested writers which I also want to contribute. To be true, the past history of Solomon Islands was a dark era. It is a period of tribal war and very barbaric islanders who are involved and experience in fighting and raiding. During the colonial era, this was yet still experience under British rulers. To mention few: the Kwaio killing; the hunt for and raid on Ma'asina movement leaders' and followers as well the Moro movement.

During WWII, Japanese soldiers mistreat people in Western and Isabel, and other places even encounter similar incidents as well. These incidents have wounds in the hearts of the people, and one should not think the other incident is more important to treat differently. Just imagine if any of your ears is clip and lock to the ear of another person and is whip on the back to carry heavy loads; a mother witness a Japanes soldier killed her husband and sons in front of her; a tortured village elder; and families are misplace to the bush because their villages are burnt.

These are real incidents and "very hard to get away with it" situations but they are all past events. In the colonial time, what people know is that, the white men are against what they believe in and became bitter enemies. Moreover, we cannot deny the fact that what Britain do is so cruel. But we cannot judge the past by comparing it to the present. Today, the situation is safer than in the past, which was a hostile environment. The past incident marks the beginning of a struggle for us to be self determination which we achieve in 1978. I therefore believe that compensation is not the right choice, but if the government respond to it, then all who face the same mistreatment should also get compensation. Solomon Islanders face the same treatment and under one government, and what others do will raise the same feeling. Regarding the Durban conference, it was the case of a whole country, represent by their government. So what will our government do then, compensate Kwaio, and then leave others who experience similar situation to just move on? And if the government pays for the compensation, will it really heal the wound when Britain will not spend a cent or even an apology? I think no, so we must be more realistic on such a situation, because for sure, it will be another big issue if the government respond.

To finish, I want to comment on Gloria Bell's claim. I am sympathizing with your family's loss, and it is better to understand that Mr. Bell was killed on duty for a well organized British administration where they must have some initiatives on compensation. So, once again, they are all past incidents that became our history, where it cannot be faded away. By now we are in an era of different issues that affecting us that we should now concentrate on it.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this letter/article are those of James S Lasi and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Solomon Times Online.

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