Dear Editor – I was struck by the simple story, published in your last issue of the Sunday Star, of the determination and self-enterprise which has resulted in Winnifred Nanau, originally from Malaita, earning a living and income for her family by selling used clothing from her rented hut in Honiara.
Winnifred was reported as saying there are opportunities for others to earn themselves a living, but it’s not an ‘easy ride.’
Itoccurs to me, therefore, to pose the question, in the difficult, local economic circumstances, whether there is either a private NGO or a government department that helps to promote small business development, even as small as trading, like Winnifred, in selling second hand or homemade clothes?
I know the DCCG is examining ways to aid the private sector with loans and some institutions are doing the same but, seemingly, Winnifred has gone it alone and is succeeding. Others can doit too and I would encourage it.
In the small street I live in Bangkok the sidewalk is awash with self-enterprise business women, oftenof poor backgrounds who make a living from roasting bananas, roasting sausages, cooking fried chicken, selling sandwiches, clothing, socks, shoes, sandals, flowers and traditional cooked rice, just to list a few of the activities.
Many of these small traders have adapted bicycles with a small trailer which has burner fired by charcoal and allows food to be roasted over a wire grill placed over the top of the cooking pot.
While I am not suggesting such a range of self-help enterprises would be permitted in Honiara, or surrounds, because of either health or street bylaws, I would encourage would be traders with the same needs and determination as Winnifred to seek out the limits of the law on trading, but also others to encourage their business potential by either NGO or government backing and business training.
Well done Winnifred!
Former police commissioner