Dear Editor – A vehicle-ride through the streets of Honiara speaks for itself. There are potholes almost within every 10 to 20metres even along the main highway.
But where have all the charges irrespective of taxes or management fees collected by various government authorities gone to?
The most notable of them all is – the exorbitant licence fees charged by Honiara City Council (HCC).
This is the agonising view of public road users – especially taxi and bus owners. The question remains: Has HCC directly involved in maintaining roads within the suburban areas of Honiara?
Or is it a standardised devolving function to the second-tier level governments? In Honiara, I am pretty sure the road maintenance comes under the ambit of MID.
For HCC, why charge unreasonable fees with no reciprocal responsibility? Many among the elite argued the revenue source would help to soak up what has become prevalent in Solomon Islands – the nemesis of “cash-box budgeting’.
Why not we go about exploring the option of setting up a Land Transport Authority to deal with our road woes.
Fiji did it and it has been working! It fits in well with the expression my tambu once uttered: “seleni lon wata go lon wata”.
Seriously, it makes sense, isn’t it?
Whilst the fees will keep on increasing in the years to come (definitely), the pathetic road conditions in Honiara will live with time. Worse still, even the streets don’t have signs though it has gained its status as a city.
A trip to either Suva in Fiji or Port Moresby in PNG will say otherwise. What a shameful thing! Are we still sleeping on our laurels and expect manna to fall down from the sky?
Wake up folks, we are living in a competitive world! It all boils down to us – embracing a doing mode and maximizing our scare resources. Nafu nao olketa!