Dear Editor – Allow me space in your newspaper to write and express my personal views in regard to Dr Derek Sikua’s comments against the Prime Minister concerning the ex-Militants rehabilitation packages.
As a simple grassroots man, it intrigues me to say that Dr Sikua choose to remain ignorant of the real facts to fathom the differences between the TPA (Townsville Peace Agreement) and TRC (Truth & Reconciliation Commission) recommendations.
To refresh Dr Sikua’s memory, the negotiation and signing of the TPA takes place before the TRC is set-up by the government as a followup to the TPA.
Therefore in my view the contents of the TPA is set above the TRC and must be given the priority it deserves to be implemented before the TRC can follow if the government fully endorse its contents.
It does not matter if the $150,000 payout to each ex. militant is not listed as claimed by critics, because the Crux of the subject matter is that whether the Prime Minister at that time (Sir A Kemakeza) just mention it or verbally agreed on between the signatories of the TPA – it will become part of the agreement as witnessed and heard by those ex. militant commanders and representatives who is present at that time of negotiation and singing of the TPA.
Also the counter claims by Dr Sikua that the Prime Minister is power hungry holds no water at all. In my humble view Prime Minister Sogavare is a real gentleman, a statesman, and a true national leader who cares for the welfare and well-being of every Solomon Islanders in striving and trying to find the rightful solutions to the restoration of lasting peace, economic development and prosperity for all of us at every levels of our social norms.
In concluding, let me say that the TPA is the first rightful step the present government need to implement before the TRC recommendations will be considered for implementation.
I say this because the TRC is like a cart and its recommendations are like items or cargo placed in this cart.
The Solomon Islands government is like a horse and it has the ability go alone without the cart with no problems.
But if you place a Cart before the horse the cart can’t go anywhere, because it needs a horse to carry it to its destination.
The Prime Minister is like the rider on the horse back.
The horse rider can turn the horse left or right and make it go faster and can attach or discharge the cart from the horse at any given time he wishes.
So why not give the Prime Minister the chances he needs to put his ideas and strategic plans into action, instead of trying to shoot him down with all those unproven critical bullets.
James D. Baura