Dear Editor,

Last week the Member of Parliament for South Guadalcanal, the Hon. David Day Pacha, was quoted in an article in the Solomon Star as having said said the $3 million allocated in the budget was not enough for reconciliation, citing undisclosed issues in the country which need to be addressed before any major reconciliation can happen.

The word "reconciliation" derives from the Latin expression conciliatus, which means "coming together". Strictly speaking reconciliation implies a process of restoring the shattered relationship between two sides.

Reconciliation restores amicability, which requires more than forgiveness. It requires the re-establishment of trust.

Never in this world is hostility appeased by hostility, it is appeased by an absence of hostility and the time is right to forgive and forget.

Foreigners, like myself, are often accused of not understanding kastom and indeed I might be accused of naivety in writing this plea for reconciliation, but sometimes external players have been able to see across divides and to offer constructive advice.

It is in this context that I would urge all principled and effective leaders to try to find traditional kastom solutions that will meet the aspirations of the people leading to lasting solutions without resorting to monetary compensation as the basis for reconciliation.

Yours sincerely

Frank Short