Australian High Commissioner Roderick Brazier has made his first visit to Gizo, and to the Boeboe community on Kohinggo Island, on 31 May and 1 June 2017.
During his visit, Mr Brazier met with the Premier of Western Province, Wayne Maepioh, conducted a tour of the Gizo market and officially handed over ten water tanks for the Boeboe community, in Western Province.
A key focus of the visit was on the opportunities available for Western Province to boost economic activities and tourism development. Mr Brazier noted ‘Australia was proud to be working with the Provincial Government to redevelop the Gizo market, which presents a tangible connection between international cruise ships and local markets.’ The market upgrade will benefit local market vendors and visiting tourists.
The High Commissioner’s visit to Boeboe community on Kohinggo Island marked the first visit by an Australian High Commissioner to that community. The High Commissioner was accompanied by Deputy Premier Maloney Lopoto, Acting Provincial Police Commander Vincent Eria and Provincial Member for Vona Vona Ward, Rolly Panda. Australian funding through the Direct Aid Program has supported the installation of ten water tanks, ensuring clean and safe drinking water for more than 800 men, women and children of Boeboe.
During his visit to the Gizo Police Station, the High Commissioner reiterated Australia’s support to the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force, noting after RAMSI departs, Australia’s support will be provided through the Australian Federal Police’s large and continuing police development program.
Mr Brazier also used his visit to meet with Australian volunteers and advisers based in Gizo, and visited the Gizo Hospital, Gizo courthouse and [email protected], all areas in which Australian funding is supporting the Provincial and National Governments to strengthen development in Western Province.
Reflecting on the visit, the High Commissioner said ‘Western Province is a place of great natural beauty and sure to become a significant tourist destination. Australia is proud to support the Western Provincial Government and its people to build opportunities for a more prosperous community’.