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Is Wilson Rano above the law?

26 February 2015

Dear Editor – The action of a lawyer Wilson Rano is questionable and raises the question of whether such people are above the law.

It is important that the actions of these people are made known to the public so that they stop what they are doing.

Last year our group got an order from the High Court for Everwind Company Limited owned by Pau, the son of the owner of Samlimsan, to pull out logging machines from Pugu land in Ngella and refrain from further activities until relevant issues are sorted out.

The case is still pending in the high court.

One of the issues that need sorting out was the process in which the licence was obtained.

In the affidavit by the former premier of Central province, he denied the executive having approved the form 3 of the Forest and Timber Resources Utilization Act (FTRUA).

This is a requirement in the Act before the licence is processed. This was communicated to the former commissioner by the premier before the licence was issued.

The former Provincial Secretary also denied having signed the form 3 and 4 that were presented to the ministry by Mr Rano.

This was also communicated to the commissioner before the licence was issued. Also, the forms were dated in November 2013 while the Licence was issued in October 2013.

That is a month earlier. Also, one of the grantor of the timber rights was not in the forms 1 and 2.

Mr Rano having colluded with the former commissioner has his name suddenly appearing in the forms 3 and 4.

I don’t think the commissioner has the right to include him as a grantor of timber right because he was not determined during the timber rights hearing.

Attempt to sort this out with the former commissioner Reeves Moveni, proved futile.

The only thing we got was the file suddenly disappeared from the registry and no one could locate it.

There were also many discrepancies which I will provide to your paper soon that point to the fact that these forms could have been forged or made up by Mr Rano.

I am also surprised that the learned commissioner could continue to issue the licence knowing that these discrepancies appear in the forms.

Even before the licence was issued, the former premier advised the commissioner of these issues but choose to ignore them. It appears that he was part of the scheme that led to the issuing of the license.

Since the court order was served to them by the Tulagi Police last year, the company continued to carry out logging operations.

Just this week they managed to load the first shipment in defiance of the court order. What is surprising is the licence holder, Wilson Rano, is a lawyer and should have advised the company to cease operation in respect of the order. 

However, his actions of allowing the company to continue operations suggest that he has no regard for the very court he is supposed to serve.

Also, he is acting as if he is above the law. This kind of attitude does not reflect well on our judicial system where the very people who are entrusted to uphold the law and protect the judicial system are not respecting it.

It also questions the power of the courts to enforce the laws. What does the court order mean to these companies and lawyers who continue to disregard them?

To a layman, the court is the place for justice and security. But if people disregard the orders of the courts just like that, then, I don’t know who else will protect the people from the injustices and insecurity that people like Rano and Pau continue to pose to the people of this country.

Hence, I would like to call on the relevant authorities to take actions on such people who are not respecting our judicial system.

Michael Salini



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