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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

North Malaitans want change in leadership

A NORTH Malaita community leader says his people want a change in political leadership. Patrick Fatai told the Solomon Star from Auki by phone yesterday that his people in Malu’u are fed up of Manasseh Sogavare’s leadership style.

“We fully support moves by the Opposition to oust Mr Sogavare,” Mr Fatai said. “If they are successful, we felt the most ideal person to take over as prime minister is Dr Derick Sikua,” Mr Fatai said.

He said the people of Malu’u have now realised the hypocritical style of leadership demonstrated by Mr Sogavare in the last 18 months. “Mr Sogavare had claimed to have the people of this nation at heart. That was not true.

“From what we’ve seen up until now, he only has Julian Moti at heart,” Mr Fatai said. He said north Malaitans appreciate the government’s bottom up approach policy.

However, he said while the government talked so much about this policy, it is not really putting its energy and support behind it. “Instead, the government, under Mr Sogavare’s leadership, diverted much of its attention and focus on protecting Mr Moti.

“We were saddened to learn that Mr Sogavare spent $1 million to pay for Mr Moti’s legal fees. “This is a huge amount of money that could best be utilised to fund rural projects.”

Mr Fatai said it was obvious that Mr Sogavare’s style of leadership was dictatorial and he must be removed.

He urged government ministers who resigned recently to stick with the Opposition and help to get rid of Mr Sogavare. He said this is the right time for a change in leadership.

Meanwhile, Mr Fatai described comments by Western Province premier, Alex Lokopio, on the radio at the weekend as “unthinkable”. Mr Lokopio, after a meeting with Mr Sogavare, had asked ministers from Western Province who defected, to rejoin the government.

But Mr Fatai said the move taken by the defected government ministers and backbenchers was in the best interest of the nation. “Mr Lokopio should remember that this government had arranged for the illegal landing of Mr Moti in his province. “This shows that Mr Sogavare has no respect for the government and people of Western Province, especially those at Munda,” Mr Fata said.

He said he hoped Mr Lokopio was not misled by the embattled prime minister.
“If Mr Lokopio cares about his people, then this is not the type of government he should support. “For this government cares more for its cronies than the people of Solomon Islands,” Mr Fatai said.

Source: Solomonstar

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