MINISTER oF Finance and Treasury Harry Kuma in his second reading of 2020 budget speech in Parliament last week says the government is committed to implement key reforms under its two pillars, the fundamental and sectoral reforms.
Kuma said the Democratic Coalition Government for Advancement (DCGA) expects that by 2020, five major reforms should be progressed to consistently deliver the 2020 budget strategy.
He said the major reforms that are expected to progress in 2020 include; Tax reform, Mining legislation reform, Traditional Governance reform and the review of the Constituency Development Fund Act and Regulation and the alignment to the PFM Act, 2013.
“This is part of the government’s commitment to implement its two pillars of reforms, the fundamental and sectoral reform and to consistently deliver the 2020 budget strategy,” he said.
Kuma said the DCGA will also continue to strongly advocate for good governance and these are manifested in the on-going effort to establishing and operationalising the Anti-Corruption Commission and also the effort to review other legislations such as the Political Party Integrity Legislation and the Electoral Act.
He said all these are planned to be progressed in 2020.
Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Mathew Wale in his speech said good governance can be derived when accountability and transparency is upheld in the conduct of public and government affairs.
“If it were true the Solomon Islands government would be a very responsive one indeed and would command the trust of the people. Accountability begins in parliament,” he said.
Wale said the executive government is accountable to parliament but efforts to short circuit parliamentary supervisory and oversight functions point in the other direction.
“Using parliament as a rubber stamp is not embracing accountability. I have said this many times in the past that our system of representative democracy is based on government by consent.
“We are not here for our own private interests and that of those close to us. We have been granted consent by the national electorate to act as trustees on their behalf over the affairs of this nation,” he added.
He said all decisions, indecisions, actions or inactions taken by government are done as trustees acting in the best interests of the people.
“But when leaders lose sight of this trust relationship, government loses the trust of the people, resources are likely to be inefficiently allocated and expended and government services are likely to be ineffectively delivered, if at all,” he added.
Wale said executive government would do well to be deliberate about ensuring this important principle is always before all who exercise public office at the political and administrative levels as it is for the greater public good.
By IAN M.KAUKUI