Into Melanesian minefield

Foreign Ministers of the Melanesian Spearhead Group are set to tip-toe through a diplomatic minefield with news that a MSG delegation – led by Fiji’s Ratu Inoke Kubuabola – will make its long-awaited visit to the Indonesian province of West Papua this week. The mission is fraught with potential difficulty and will require all the…

What’s next for Papua after the MSG diplomacy?

The 2013 Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) summit undoubtedly marked a historic moment on the long journey of Papua’s international diplomacy. During the top diplomatic gathering of the Melanesian countries, the Papuan representatives were invited for the first time. While this political decision constitutes a breakthrough for the political impasse in Jakarta, the decision is still pending…

Ill-fated MV Francis-Gerena saga

Over the last few days the public, news media and the social network had produced, published and broadcasted so much fabricated information and news about the episode surrounding the recently ill-fated MV Francis-Gerena. While we do appreciate public and press freedom, we must also be mindful of the wilful damage such unfounded fabricated information could…

A balanced response on health services

In yesterday’s editorial piece (‘Is Number 9 Melanesia’s Worst Hospital?’, Solstar 2/12), the author made some very good and challenging points about NRH and provincial health services, highlighting areas of concern of which the Government is no doubt aware and seeking to address. Arguments of this nature rightly challenge responsible authorities to improve performance and…

What is RDP?

THE Solomon Islands Rural Development Program (RDP) is the largest project that the World Bank supports in Solomon Islands. With new funding support from the Australian Government announced Tuesday, the project investment will exceed US$37 million. The Program is implemented by the national government through the Ministry of Development Planning and Aid Coordination (MDPAC) and…

Good work done but much remain

I am encouraged to read that the new Special Coordinator to the Regional Assistance Mission (RAMSI) has said she will continue to work with the RSIPF in support of the SIG-RAMSI five year development plan announced comparatively recently. I acknowledge the excellent work undertaken by RAMSI since 2003 in re-training and developing the capacity of…

The tragedy that made a president

The young, skinny Navy officer walked along the dock at a South Pacific base and met his new crewmen for the first time, as they stood on the sun-drenched deck of a nondescript, navy green torpedo boat. Some of the men on board were crusty old sailors and war veterans, others just young and cocky…

What’s up in the Flag

You’ve seen the five stars embedded on the nation flag. But did you know what they mean? That’s the question local tour guides struggled with when they’re asked by tourists. The issue came into light during a workshop facilitated by Destination Solomon’s and Travel Solomon’s last week at the Rock Haven conference room in Honiara.…

Kwaio man launches new book at ANU

AT an exceptional occasion Tuesday this week at the Australian National University’s (ANU) University House, coinciding with the Solomon Islands Transition Workshop, a little known Esau Kekeubata of the interior of East Kwaio was given an uncommon honor to launch Dr David Akin’s book: Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom. Dr Akin…