He said the festival was a huge success.
“This is the second time in 20 years Solomon Islands has successfully host this regional event,” the deputy prime minister said.
“This is the first big event to be hosted in Solomon Islands after the departure of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands last year,” he added.
“We are so proud to see despite our limited resources the Solomon Islands people are yet and again demonstrated the cooperation attitude and determination spirit to stand together, play host to our Melanesian brothers and sisters in the last 10 days with pride and success.”
“We must be proud of our Melanesian heritage and show it to the world and people who may not know who we are and where to find us while we inhabit a good extend of land mass.”
Mr Sogavare said despite our international and regional politics, we must get together and showcase our Melanesia cultures and traditions through songs and dances as a way of preserving our identity as a people in a world where the agenda of eliminating races and indigenous people is taking momentum.
“And if we are not careful we could become history.
“Common Melanesian culture is one of the pillars that the MSG is founded and the 6thMACFest continues to reinforce this pillar through regular sharing, exchange and interaction of our cultures.”
Meanwhile, Mr Sogavare thanked all the Melanesian participants and the invited delegations.
“I wish to convey our sincere thank you and appreciation for the support that was rendered to us by our MSG members under the cultural cooperation agreement.
“Solomon Islands stansd prepared to reciprocate your good gesture in the future, we are one people we are one Melanesia.”
The deputy prime minister said he believed all the participating countries have achieved the aims and objectives of MACFest 2018 under the theme“Past Recollections; Future Connections”.
He said the theme reinforces the significance of this festival as a time to reminisce on our history and cultures, whilst at the same time connecting ourselves as one people in diversity for a brighter connected future.
Vanuatu will host the 2022 MACFest.
Chair Woman for the Culture Council of Vanuatu Jenny Lingo assured Melanesian countries her country looks forward to receiving them in 2022.
By ANDREW FANASIA