Wednesday, 23 January 2008 8:54 AM

Vandalism Blow to Tourism in Solomons: Bureau General Manager

The Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau, SIVB, deplores the removal of the Japanese Monument at Mount Austin in Honiara last week.

SIVB's General Manager, Michael Tokuru, says the monument is a landmark in the country's history and a monument Japanese veteran and their relatives visit every year.

He says such action is a disrespect to people who honour those who have lost their loved ones during the Second World War, and a blow to the tourism industry in Solomon Islands.

Mr. Tokuru says the public should have the respect for such landmark monuments and leave them alone.

He says while he welcomes visitors to visit these sites, the public must be reminded that these monuments represent historical events which visitors to Solomon Islands would want to see.

"I support the call to ensure those areas remain open to visitors and the public, but at the same time security are needed at those areas," the SIVB General Manager states.

He calls on people who have no reason to be around the area to stay away from the premises.