PM distances Sam Group from gov’t - Solomon Star News

PM distances Sam Group from gov’t
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13 December 2019
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PM Manasseh Sogavare.


PRIME Minister Manasseh Sogavare says the Government has no connection and does not know about China Sam group.

He was answering question in parliament about the controversial Chinese firm.

East Are’Are MP Peter Kenilorea has questioned why China Sam Group was included as part of Sogavare’s delegation during his recent visit to China and what agreement was signed between China Sam Group and the Solomon Islands Government as claimed in Sam Group’s website?

But Sogavare said no representative of the China Sam Group accompanied his delegation to Beijing and no agreement was signed between them.

He stated the information that appeared in China Sam Group were not true.

Sogavare said when they were in Beijing he was informed of that China Sam Group who wanted to see him.

“We didn’t see them in Beijing but they continued to follow us to Guangdong province but with the tight security protocols, they were not able to meet me,” he said.

However, he said they have insisted for short discussions and he accepted to meet them informally.

Sogavare said during the short meeting, he realised that one of the Sam Group reps was a Mr Wong, who was appointed as Solomon Islands’ trade commissioner to Macau during the Gordon Lilo government.

“So the main subject of that meeting was to say to me that he is ready and prepare to do his role as the Trade Commissioner but my message to him was ‘no’ we have already formalised our diplomatic relations with PRC and that every appointment has to be authorised and approved by PRC,” he said.

Sogavare said it was after the meeting that Sam Group reps asked to take photos with him, which ended up on their website.

He said he had learned his lesson on who he should be taking photos with.

Sam Group in August signed a strategic agreement with Central Province, which could have given it control over the island of Tulagi.

When the agreement was exposed, the Attorney General issued directives to cancel the agreement.

By IAN M.KAUKUI

 

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