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Kwaio chief appeals to his people

24 May 2014

Amidst the lawlessness and criminal activities experienced in town in the past few days, a Honiara based Kwaio chief is calling on all Kwaio people living in Burns Creek area and elsewhere in town to refrain or not to join those who caused a lot of criminal activities within and around Honiara.

Chief Stephen Firibae said that it’s about time that Kwaio people must recognize who they are and make a U-turn to refrain from all these unaccepted criminal behaviour.

He reminded all Kwaio people that they are bound by God’s given customs and customs which spells out very clearly that they must respect other people within their own communities and those with different cultures so that they can live with them in peace, harmony and have respect for each other.

“This is the only way to live harmoniously together in our communities because if someone somehow causes a problem by stealing someone’s property or killing someone in a family, you would be asked to pay a huge compensation, which you must pay to avoid retaliation.”

Chief Firibae further reminded all Kwaio people that as other friends do have respect for the rule of law, they too came here in Honiara to live with them and not to steal other families or looting Chinese shops.

“We must not involve in other people’s problems. I asked all of us Kwaio people to refrain from all these criminal activities and understand that Chinese business people are all innocent. They came to Solomon Islands to help develop our country by providing employment and services to the people”.

Chief Firibae said if the Chinese are tired of our non senses and decided to close down their shops, where could we get some of the basic necessities that we need to survive on a daily basis?

“We would indeed be faced with a more severe problem with our families struggling to make ends meet. The government would also lose the much needed tax from the Chinese businesses to run its own services to serve us the people of Solomon Islands.”

Chief Firibae went on to say to his good people of Kwaio that, “we are not poor as some of us may think. We have abundant natural resources back at home and if we have nothing to do here in town, then let’s go back home to work on our lands by planting vegetables, root crops and fruit trees; and bring our products back in town to sell in the markets rather than roaming the streets of Honiara with intention to take advantage of situations just for stealing and looting Chinese shops”.

Chief Firibae urged his people of Kwaio living in Honiara that they should all see the Chinese as their mentors in going about doing things for their survival. 

“The Chinese came here and worked hard for the future of their families and that is how they are surviving. “If we Kwaio people worked hard, we could be like the Chinese owning big shops, cars and big houses; but if we are lazy, we would end up with stealing and looting other peoples’ properties.”

Chief Firibae emphasised two important things for his good people of Kwaio to seriously consider for their wellbeing and livelihood.

The first thing is education. He urged parents to work hard for the education of their children. He said that our wish is to ensure that all our children are to be educated.

The second thing is development. He said; “let us look back home and develop our own land and not to waste time in Honiara, waiting to take advantage of lawlessness in town and join just to steal.”

Chief Firibae said that, as a chief from Kwaio, he is particularly concerned about his own people taking part in such unruly behavior.

Therefore, he appealed to all Kwaio parents to talk to their children to refrain from taking part in the lawlessness and criminal activities that are happening in Honiara.

He further appealed to other Kwaio chiefs, church leaders, Honourable MPs and intending candidates to come out from whatever authority you are in and talk to our people in their level.

He said that it’s about time that our people, especially the youth, need some advice and encouragement.

“We can organize a general meeting for our people so that we can talk and discuss the future of our young generation of Kwaio.”

By Charles Fox Lemoa
SIBC Stringer



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