Wednesday, 18 August 2010 9:59 AM

Lobbying Increases, Outcome Unpredictable

While Solomon Islands is only two days away from the close of nominations for the country's future Prime Minister, latest information trickling out from the main camps still has not offered the clearest of direction on a political coalition.

A handful of Members of Parliament who had campaigned and contested the elections under the names and policies of political parties have deserted their party affiliations or are still uncertain on where to pledge their loyalty now that they have won their seats.

The Solomon Islands Democratic Party has returned the highest number of members during this year's elections but so far a number of the twelve or thirteen have avoided public association with their political party.

They include: the Lau/Mbaelelea MP, Walter Folotalu and the East Malaita MP, Manasseh Maelanga.

Folotalu and Maelanga are reportedly camping at the Mendana Hotel with West Honiara MP, Namson Tran, East Honiara MP Douglas Ete, and North Malaita MP, Jimmy Lusibaea.

Another MP who seems to be dodging his political party is Peter Shanel Agovaka.

The Central Guadalcanal MP had contested the elections under the Sogavare-led OUR Party but was photographed last week with M-Ps of the political merger of Solomon Islands Democratic Party, Peoples Federation Party, Solomon Islands Party for Rural Advancement, the Solomon Islands People's Congress Party and some independent members.

The latest of provincial arrivals in Honiara today, MP for Temotu-Vatud, Clay Forau Soalaoi, also seemed uncertain on where he stands in the current political lobbying.

Mr Forau had contested the elections under the Peoples Federation Party.

Meanwhile, other reports say that the political coalition at the Honiara Hotel is considering a retreat either at the Gizo Hotel in Western Province or at the Maravagi Resort in Central Islands Province.

Nomination calls for a Prime Minister opened today and will close at 4pm this Friday, the 20th of August.