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Monday, July 09, 2007

Solomon Island's Prime Minister thanks Malaitans for their contribution towards building the country.

Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare has spoken highly of Malaita for contributing to the development of the country. At the same time he offered a formal “thank you” from the Government to the Malaitans for their contribution to nation building.

Speaking at the 29th Anniversary celebrations in Auki on Friday, Mr Sogavare said Malaitans are leaders from the most humble to highest position.

“You see them from the most humble duties to the highest level of leadership in commerce, politics, state owned enterprises and community leadership,” Mr Sogavare said. He believes that as a country, Solomon Islands has yet to accord the recognition appropriately due to the people of Malaita for their effort and contribution.

Mr Sogave made particular reference to Malaitans for their contribution in preparing the country economically for independence. The country’s economy leading to independence was predominantly copra, from plantations established in alienated lands throughout the country, and timber.

“It was the untiring and unselfish efforts of Malaitan labour forces in all these plantations that enabled the country to sustain and export industry to support our young nation in its formative years, Mr Sogavare said.

Whilst praising Malaitans, he also cautioned that the province and the rest of the country are faced with a new set of challenges after the events of 2000.
Mr Sogavare said during that time Solomon Islanders revolted against the top down, foreign driven and highly contralised economic development strategy.

The Prime Minister said of the key messages of that event was a call for decentralisation of the development to other provinces.
“I want to impress upon the people Malaita that it is our interest to take serious heed of that call,” the MP for East Choiseul said.

Mr Sogavare said in Solomon Islands, where the control of land and resources is vested on tribal groups, the onus is really on the people to cooperate with government. He said it is significant for Malaita, as the province has major projects being lined up.

Projects line-up for the province include: the Bina Habour deep sea port and related development project; Auluta Basin Palm Oil; Leili Island Tourism, Waisisi Palm Oil, and the proposed Suafa Bay Marine and Fish Port and Malaita Cattle Rehabilitation.

Source: Solomon Star

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