Politics Archive February 2022

The Opposition Leader says the blunder remains that the Prime Minister allowed the matter to go to court in the first place and then later advised for the case to be retracted by writing to the DPP, whose unfettered criminal jurisdiction is guided by the Constitution.

Opposition Leader Says AG's Clarification Evasive

Leader of Opposition Hon Matthew Wale has described the Attorney General’s clarification on the Prime Minister’s interference in the criminal proceedings instituted against the PNG doctor’s case as ‘evasive’.
The UN Security Council had voted to refer the matter to the UN General Assembly, which will be deliberating on this matter this week.

Opposition Urges Government to Speak up Aganist Russia Invasion at UNGA

The Leader of Opposition Hon. Matthew Wale has urged the government to condemn the actions by Russia in invading Ukraine at the United Nations General Assembly this week.
Mr Mangau says, “I wish to remind you that there will be times when your integrity will be challenged, when wantok culture will make it difficult for you. I ask you to remember that you are entrusted to rise above these pressures and uphold the laws of this country in a manner that is fair and equal to all."

Police Constables Graduate from Academy

Sixty-nine probation police constables graduate and take their oath of office during a strict health compliant graduation ceremony held at Rove police headquarters on 25 February 2022.
Hon. Stanley Festus Sofu is the new Minister for the Ministry of Environment, while Hon. Augustine Auga is the new Minister for Agriculture and Livestock (MAL).

Vacant Ministerial Porfolios Filled

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare has filled the two vacant Ministerial portfolios following the passing away and resignation of respective former ministers last year.
The Chinese police advisory group meets with Chinese Ambassador Li Ming in Solomon Islands shortly after their arrival in the country.

Chinese Police Begin Work in the Solomon Islands

A team of Chinese police officers has begun work in Solomon Islands, two months after the government accepted Beijing's offer to help restore law and order following recent anti-government demonstrations.
The Opposition Leader said health workers have raised concerns that some of them have to work up to 12 hours and the government should acknowledge their commitment and hard-work during this challenging time.

Opposition Raises Concerns on Health Workers Welfare

Reports of health workers welfare not well looked after has irked the Opposition, calling on the government to urgently address their concerns.
"The provincial governments’ dependency on the MHMS for the past two years has caught us [provincial governments] by surprise. Well, it should not be a surprise, provincial governments should be given more funding to build their own provincial isolation and quarantine centers in anticipation of the Covid-19 outbreak two years prior."

Provinces Want Fair Distribution of ADB's SBD$40M Grant For COVID-19 Response

The Premier of Guadalcanal Province Hon. Francis Sade, says he supports Premier Stanely Manetiva’s (Central Islands Province) call for the national government and all premiers to have an urgent roundtable discussion on the SBD$40 million grant recently announced by the Asian Development Bank, ADB.
The officer is currently on suspension while investigations are progressing into the case.

Police Officer Suspended After Traffic Accident

Officers of the Royal Solomon Island Police Force (RSIPF) at the National Traffic Department are investigating a traffic accident, which involved a Police vehicle and a Toyota caldina car along Kukum Highway, in Honiara on 12 February 2022.
(L-R) SINIS Performance Manager Amanda Korinihona, SINS Executive Director Aaron Alsop, SIBF President Cyril Rachman and SIBF executive member, Timmy Magi.

Basketball Signs MOU With Sports Institute

The Solomon Islands Basketball Federation (SIBF) is the latest National Federation (NF) to pen down the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to partner with the Solomon Islands National Institute of Sport (SINIS) High – Performance program in time for their preparations for the upcoming 2022 FIBA Melanesia Basketball Cup in Fiji this April.
The Opposition Leader said reports that the ship was transporting cargoes for foreign bechedemer buyers in Ontong Java must also be thoroughly investigated.

Wale: Who Authorised MV Solomon Prestige 2 to Travel to Ontong Java?

Leader Hon Matthew Wale has probed the Office of the Prime Minister & Cabinet (OPMC) as to who authorised Solomon Prestige 2 to travel to Ontong Java.
“It is sad that each day we only hear updates of daily increase in cases and deaths but nothing on any strategy or plans on a way forward on how to effectively respond to the current situation not only in Honiara but other provinces,” he said.

Fight Against Virus Needs a New Approach: Wale

Opposition Leader Hon Matthew Wale says the confession by the health minister that authorities do not know the extent of infections around the country is very ‘worrying’.
Preliminary findings from the Central Bank of Solomon Islands (CBSI) show the direct loss of tax revenues during the most recent lockdown (January 25-30) averaged around SBD$10.6 million a day.

Millons Lost During Lockdowns

The country has lost millions of dollars in tax revenue as a result of the recent covid-19 lockdowns imposed at the beginning of community transmission last month.
A total of more than 28,000 tests had been conducted since the beginning of our response.

Health Distributes Rapid Test Kits As Cases Rise

The Ministry of Health and Medical Services this week has released a total 41,000 Rapid Antigen Test Kits from the National Medical Store and distributed in Honiara and the Provinces for COVID-19 testing.
Strict COVID-19 safety measures were followed for all deployments including contactless deliveries to minimise contact between the aircraft crew and the public.

Australian Aircrafts Airlift Essential Items to West and Malaita Provinces

This week, in close partnership with the Solomon Islands Government, Australia’s C-27J Spartan aircrafts completed their first deployments to Auki, Munda and Gizo.
Hon Wale said the new normal should also push forward innovative modes of teaching and the need for government support in that area.

Opposition Leader Questions Plans for Schools Nationwide

Opposition Leader Hon. Matthew Wale has questioned the Government if there are any plans in place for schools around the country.
Foreign Minister Manele assured Secretary Blinken that the Government stands ready to work with US diplomats to make this happen.

Solomon Islands Welcomes US Announcement to Re-open Embassy in Honiara

The Minister of Foreign Affairs & External Trade, Hon. Jeremiah Manele welcome the announcement made by the US Secretary of State, Antony John Blinken, to re-establish the US Embassy in Honiara.
Kenilorea says he joins the Solomon Islands Government to thank US Secretary of State Blinken for announcing the government of USA’s intention to re-opening a US Embassy in Honiara.

Kenilorea Welcomes Plans to Re-open US Embassy in Solomon Islands

Member of Parliament for East Are’are and Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee of Parliament, Hon. Perter Kenilorea Jr, has welcomed plans by the US to re-open its embassy in Solomon Islands.
Washington promises more diplomatic and security resources to the South Pacific region as China’s influence grows.

US to Reopen Solomon Islands Embassy

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has confirmed the United States plans to open an embassy in the South Pacific nation of Solomon Islands in an effort to counter China’s influence in the politically troubled Pacific Islands.
Papua New Guinea Police Commissioner Mr. David Manning.

Police Commissioner Manning Refutes Allegations Against PNG Police

The Papua New Guinea Police Commissioner David Manning has refuted allegations levelled against the PNG police currently serving in Solomon Islands.
The Committee reiterates that the protocols in place are there to protect our communities, it stressed.

COVID-19 Breach: Relatives Attempt to Take Dead Body Home

The Oversight Committee on COVID-19 is concerned that there are people in the Honiara Emergency Zone who are covertly sending bodies of deceased persons to the villages under cover of darkness, the government said in a statement today.
“It is totally unacceptable that these rogue forces are assaulting and harming the very people they were sent to serve and protect,” the Chairman for Parliamentary Foreign Relations Committee said.

Kenilorea Condemns PNG Police Unlawful Actions

Chairman of the Parliamentary Foreign Relations Committee Hon. Peter Kenilorea Jr has condemned recent reports of unlawful actions by the PNG police force in Honiara.
The statement says that the arrangement to have MPs swabbed and tested was made through the Office of the Clerk to the National Parliament under its duty of care to the political leaders of this nation.

Government Calls on Opposition Leader Not to Politicize Pandemic

The government has called on the opposition leader, Mathew Wale, not to politicize the current COVID-19 outbreak in the country.
Now that COVID-19 has hit the country, it may be necessary for the government to re-asses its stance on the vaccine mandate. The government will need people to implement its policies, it cannot afford to let go of some of its talented workers.

No Jab No Job Policy Hits Hard on Senior Public Servants

As COVID-19 takes its toll on the health and economy of the country the no jab no job government policy will soon be implemented, with several senior public servants on the firing line.
The Opposition Leader said the government should not rush in talking about living with COVID yet.

New Policy Direction Must be Strategic: Opposition Leader

Opposition Leader Hon Matthew Wale said the government’s new policy direction to focus on the new reality of ‘living with and emerging successfully’ from the pandemic must be carefully thought out.
The Opposition Leader said the Prime Minister’s admission now confirms that there was never a National COVID Response Plan developed in the last two years.

Delay in a National COVID Response Plan a Disgrace: Wale

The Prime Minister’s confession that Cabinet and Caucus are yet to consider the National COVID Response Plan is a ‘national disgrace’.
Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare (2nd from left) with Secretary to the Prime Minister, Jimmie Rodgers, A/g Australian High Commissioner Sally-Anne Vincent, and Mr Ewen McDonald, Head of the Office of the Pacific, Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Australian Delegation Discuss COVID-19 Support with Prime Minister

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare welcomed Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Head of the Office of the Pacific, Ewen McDonald and Australian Federal Police Commissioner, Reece Kershaw APM to Honiara to discuss COVID-19 response and the ongoing strong partnership between Solomon Islands and Australia.