THE cries of the people of Solomon Islands have been heard when the much awaited Anti-Corruption Bill (ACB) 2017 was passed after its third reading in the parliament, Wednesday.
The bill came under very heavy scrutiny for three days from both sides of the house, including the members of the Independent side.
Prime minister Rick Hou thanked all Members of Parliament who have been contributed to the passage of the Bill and said he was impressed with certain contributors on the floor of the parliament.
“The Bill succeeded a number of consultation and negotiations,” Mr Hou said.
The Bill was withdrawn last year by his former predecessor, Manasseh Sogavare, which put the whole nation on its feet demanding the government to bring back the Bill to the parliament after it went through some amendment by the Bills and Legislation Committee.
The ACB aims to establish the Solomon Islands Independent Commission Against Corruption and one of the flagship of the former government.
East Central Guadalcanal MP, Ishmael Avui, in his contribution said that Solomon Islands problem is not the shortage of law but rather, we have created an environment for thieves to flourish.
“That’s our problem,” he added
“Give our people a nation they can enjoy this Bill is good for national Investment, economy, children, and employment,” Mr Avui made this sentiment when contributing to the Bill in the parliament.
Gizo/Kolobangara MP Lanelle Tanangada commended the current government for pushing this Bill this far.
“Corruption undermines our rights and talking as a representative of the women, youth, children, they want to be part of the solution,” Mrs Tanangada said.
PM Hou added that corruption hinders the achievement of good governance, a fundamental requirement to achieving optimal and sustainable economic development.
He added that, while there are few correction needs to be done as stated by contributors during the Committee Stage, the Bill must pass and later the government will deal with these corrections.
However, few days ago when the Bill was tabled Prime Minister admitted that it is no surprise, why there is an outcry from the people for leaders and the Government to do something about corruption
“It’s an outcry that no one else can do anything about it except us in this supreme law-making body of our beloved country,” the Prime Minister said.
The parliament was adjourned for 9:30am, Thursday.
By ANDREW FANASIA