An army of security guards converged onto Chinatown last Saturday as the nation heads to the polls on November 19.
They are private security guards the Solomon Islands Chinese Association (SICA) engaged to provide 24 hour security within the shopping district during the election period.
SICA chairman Matthew Quan confirmed to the Sunday Star they’ve engaged two local security firms to keep an eye on Chinatown until the election of the prime minister.
The nation goes to the polls on November 19 and the election of the prime minister should happen approximately a week after the polls.
Chinatown suffered rioting and burning on 2 April 2006, the day parliament elected Snyder Rini as prime minister.
About 95 percent of the shopping district was burned to the ground during the incident.
Business owners have however, since rebuilt and Chinatown was once again buzzing with business activities.
Quan said the move they’ve taken was just a precautionary measure and he hopes nothing as was witnessed in 2006 would happen again.
He said they’ve engaged Blake Premier Guards and Lion Hit Team to keep an eye on Chinatown and alert them of any impending lawlessness.
He added the guards will work together with the police to ensure there’s peace and security during this often tense and turbulent period.
Quan called on the public to respect business operators in Chinatown, saying they should not turn their anger and disagreement on innocent business people when they have issues with the government.
Owner of Blake Premier Guards Wilfred Akao yesterday confirmed his boys will be in Chinatown during this election period providing security for businesses.
He said they’ll be working closely with guards of Lion Hit Team and the police to ensure there’s no disturbances and lawlessness during this time.
Akao called on the public to respect businesses in Chinatown and work together with his guards to ensure peace and calm during the election.
BY ALFRED PAGEPITU