The announcement of the $24 million grant for road improvement by the SIG and donor partners, is indeed a welcoming news to rural dwellers, including some of us, who have been waiting and looking forward to the day when our roads would be improved from their current state, so that we could travel with comfort and ease to Honiara to work, or to sell our goods at the market. I am more or less alluding to the roads leading up to rural areas in Central Guadalcanal, especially the Malango area, which are located just next door to Honiara, yet they seemed to be neglected when it comes to major road improvement projects, such as the one that has just been recently announced. I gathered from a reliable source that our roads were, in fact, unlisted in previous major road improvement projects. I wonder why?

It is my hope that our roads are included in the recently announced major national road improvement project. If not, then I would like to urge the MP for Central Guadalcanal to do something about it, as a matter of urgency. This is an area of need for the people of Central Guadalcanal that has been neglected over the last decade, or two.

Our people have made substantial contribution to the development of our country's economy by way of allowing access to their land for developments such as coconut and cocoa plantations, international airport development, mining projects, and now the proposed hydro project up at the Tina river, just to name a few.

Hence, I think that it is just proper that the SIG reciprocate the good gesture shown by the Malango and Bahomea people by building them proper roads. When I say proper roads, I mean tar-sealed roads with proper drainage systems, and bridges. We had enough of that "logging-type" road maintenance, which lasts for only a month, and caused further deterioration to our roads.

It is an obvious fact that accessibility to good roads mean that our rural people can participate more effectively in economic activities that can improve their standard of living and quality of life. Moreover, with access to good road, rural people can contribute more actively in the national economy. I just hope that someone will take my plea for "proper roads" for Central Guadalcanal people with some seriousness, and a sense of responsibility.