President of the Solomon Islands Democratic Party (SIDP) Dr. Alice Pollard has called on the prime minister (PM) and his Cabinet to reconsider the timing of the planned flight to China and the Philippines.
In a statement issued by the SIDP Press Unit on Sunday, Mrs. Pollard said the likelihood of the risk this trip poses to the country’s health, wellbeing and livelihood is still high with regards to COVID 19 pandemic.
The call comes after it was confirmed the proposed direct flight to China will eventuate, despite the widespread opposition against it.
Sharing her experience in quarantine as one of the returning nationals from New Zealand in one of the earlier repatriation flights, the SIDP president pointed out, Solomon Islands is nowhere close to being prepared to handle any outbreak of the Covid-19 if it does enter.
“Upon my return home from New Zealand, I went through its quarantine process and did the same again when I got back into the country.
“I must admit that I am seriously worried, because a country with one of the best healthcare systems in the world, also resourced with highly trained health personal, strong leadership, well organised team, modern technology and fully well-equipped are still experiencing second wave of infections.
“This also seems to be the case for other developed countries.
“Comparing theirs to our health system, along with the current level of our preparedness, I must add that we are still highly vulnerable, hence should be doing everything we can to avert any risk of importing the virus,” said Dr. Alice.
The SIDP president suggests that the government should prioritise the protection of its people above all else and not do anything to compromise that protection.
“It is regrettable therefore that even with our obvious limitations, the government is still proceeding with plans for the PG2023. “This just does not make sense in light of the uncertain future Covid-19 holds for the whole world.
“Why should we take the risk just to run the Pacific Games programs when according to World Health Organisation’s latest report on the future status of the virus, it will not go away until after 2 years’ time?” Dr. Alice questioned.
She therefore strongly urges the prime minister to listen to the people.
“Let us not do anything that we will live to regret later,” she said.
Solomon Islands Democratic Party (SIDP) is a member of the current Parliamentary Opposition Coalition group.
Meanwhile, the trip to China is set for tomorrow.