Tuesday, 28 August 2007 10:56 AM

Bill Passed to Review RAMSI Facilitation Act

The National Parliament yesterday passed a motion for a review of the Facilitation Act which governs the operation of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands.

The motion, tabled by Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, was said to be long overdue given the fact that there are provisions in the Facilitation Act which require a review at least once a year. Prime Minister Sogavare said the motion is therefore in line with the Act as such provisions are there to strengthen the partnership between the Solomon Islands government and RAMSI.

In his contribution Opposition Leader, Fred Fono, suggested that the government consult the ordinary people of Solomon Islands before making amendments to the Act governing RAMSI. Mr Fono also stated that members of Parliament should be given the time to go through the Act to suggest changes where applicable to make the presence and work of RAMSI complementary to that of the national government.

Member of Parliament for Small Malaita, William Haomae, said that he hopes the government does not do anything contrary to what they have stated. "The government has been sending mixed signals towards RAMSI ever since they got into power, I hope they are not out to undermine the work of RAMSI under the premise of a review." Haomae said that the only reason why he supports the motion for the review is that there is a provision in the Facilitation Act that warrants such a review.

All members who contributed to the motion spoke highly of the assistance RAMSI had given through the restoration of law and order, the judicial sector, provincial development involvement, education and other sectors.



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