A POLITICAL party in Fiji believes they can solve their own problems and does not need the help of its Melanesian neighbors.

Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua Party spokesman Peceli Kinivuwai was reacting to observations by Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare. Mr Sogavare had earlier stated that all eyes were on PNG and the result of the elections would be crucial not only for PNG but also for the leadership of Melanesian countries.

Mr Sogavare stated in a PNG newspaper that he was hopeful for the return of Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare as he would continue to chart the direction for Fiji, the Solomons and Vanuatu in his capacity as chairman of the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

But Mr Kinivuwai of the very popular SDL party of Fiji stated in the Fiji Times that Sir Michael has got enough problems in his own backyard in which he should focus on instead of trying to step into Fiji's affairs. "We do not need external assistance as we can handle our problems in the Fijian way through dialogue," he said.

"We are aware of our culture and our prevailing religious groups so we understand our own systems better. To address our system we need people from within Fiji."

Mr Kinivuwai said the military needed to call on members of political parties to help map Fiji's path to democracy as this would comprise people who had a mandate.