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Monday, March 05, 2007

RAMSI leaders launch fresh round of provincial consultations with Malaita and Guadalcanal

by Anne McCaig

RAMSI Leaders have begun a fresh round of provincial consultations, holding meetings with the newly elected governments of Guadalcanal and Malaita provinces.

RAMSI Special Coordinator, Tim George said yesterday that he was keen to consult regularly with all nine provinces of Solomon Islands.

“RAMSI has enjoyed a very good working relationship with the provinces and I want to continue to work closely with the governments, chiefs and people of all nine provinces,” Mr George said yesterday.

Today, Mr George will lead a delegation of senior RAMSI leaders to Auki, capital of Malaita province, for RAMSI’s first meeting with the new premier, Mr Richard Irosaea Na’amo and his executive.

This follows a very useful and constructive meeting last month between RAMSI leaders and the new premier of Guadalcanal, Mr Joash Salani and his executive.

In addition to meeting with the Malaita provincial executive today, the delegation will also meet with Malaita church leaders and hold a community meeting to brief the public on RAMSI’s work in the province and nationally.

It will be Mr George’s third visit to Malaita since becoming Special Coordinator in October last year.

The RAMSI delegation includes, the assistant Special Coordinator, Maitasi Lomaloma of Fiji, the PPF Commander, Will Jamieson, RAMSI military commander, Lieutenant Colonel Rowan Martin, and a representative of the mission’s Development Coordinator, Ms Penny Bond.

Mr George said he placed a high priority on these provincial consultations, which were vital if RAMSI’s partnership with Solomon Islanders was to be truly effective nationwide.

“RAMSI has always recognised the key role provincial governments play in the administration and development of this nation,” Mr George said.

“With the majority of the population living in rural areas administered by these governments, it makes sense for RAMSI to works closely with the provincial authorities,” he said.

RAMSI has personnel, including members of the Participating Police Force, working in every province.

Source: RAMSI

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