Gwaunaru’u airport in Malaita will open temporarily this Friday to enable Prime Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare and 14 Members of Parliament from the province to attend its 32nd Second Appointed Day Anniversary at the provincial capital Auki.
The deal to briefly open the airport was signed and witnessed by Gwaunaru’u landowning parties and senior Government officials in the Prime Minister’s Office yesterday afternoon.
All the parties agreed to allow the uninterrupted use of Gwaunaru’u Airport by Solomon Islands Government from Friday 14 August to Monday 17 August 2015 for the purpose of the celebrations of the Second Appointed Day of Malaita Province.
Landowning tribal groups who witnessed and took part in the signing are from the Filisisila/Birankwao tribe, the Toloabu/Rofa tribe and the Rofa/Toloabu tribe.
The Commissioner of Lands Nelson Naoapu and the Director of Civils Aviation George Satu signed on behalf of the Solomon Islands Government.
Policy Secretary for Productive Sector in the Prime Minister’s Office, Gabriel Titili said, the arrangement whilst temporary should pave the way for an eventual deal for the reopening of the airport in the immediate future.
Mr Titili thanked the Gwaunaru’u parties for their understanding and respect in agreeing on the temporary arrangement and assured the parties that the Government will continue to find solutions for the eventual reopening of the airport.
The airport was closed some years ago and the Democratic Coalition for Change (DCC) government has been pushing for its reopening since forming the new government in December last year.
– PM Press Secretariat