Premier denies claim of $170, 000 in allowance to delegation
MALAITA Provincial Premier, Peter Channel Ramohia had denied claims that his provincial executive members to the eight Premiers conference in Honiara were paid allowances totaling $170,000.
The event kicked off yesterday in Honiara and is hosted by the Honiara City Council and Guadalcanal Province.
Reliable source from Auki, told the Solomon Star claiming each of the seventeen executive members of the provincial assembly received $10,000 as an allowance for the one-week duration of their attendance to the Premiers conference which is currently underway.
The source alleged the allowance money was sourced from the provincial ward grants payable to Malaita Provincial Government.
The source said, he felt such large amount of money could be better used in meeting cost benefit services to the majority of people in Malaita province than being used to benefit a few members of the provincial executive.
The source pointed out that action taken by Malaita Provincial Premier in including his entire executive with his official delegation to the Premiers conference in Honiara holds no logical explanation.
He said, initially the conference as it is so called the Premiers conference is meant solely for the Provincial Premiers only.
The source said what had transpired now could be interpreted as opposite to the premiers.
“Instead the Malaita delegation have turned it into a provincial members conference.”
But Premier Ramohia strongly defended his action on the inclusion of his entire provincial executive members to his delegation saying their attendance at the prestigious political level conference will give them the exposure to effective political debates in their provincial government.
He said, the exposure will help Malaita Provincial Government as they prepare to host the Premiers conference in 2017.
Premier Ramohia denied any such large sums of money paid to members of his provincial executive in the form of traveling allowances.
He said, the delegation will have the privilege of meeting Malaita Province members of National Parliament after the premiers conference to discuss matters of interest to the people of Malaita province.
By WILLIAM EKOTANI