MALAITA Provincial Premier Daniel Suidani has called on the national members of Parliament (MPs) to respect the Auki Communiqué.
The Premier made the call after learning that a national MP has sneaked in China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) to do a road visibility study in North East Malaita.
Premier Suidani shared his disappointment in a statement over the lack of respect shown by the MP concerned and cautioned Malaita leaders to abide by the terms of the communiqué.
“Let me make it clear that Malaita Province under the Auki Communiqué sections 7 and 25 specifically made reference to dealing with PRC and strongly opposed to PRC communist ideology and investment.”
“MPG understands that China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation has a strong affiliation to the Chinese Communist Party CCP and thus will be affected by the communique.”
The Malaita premier pointed out that during the meeting with government MPs led by Deputy Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga, the DPM assured Malaita Provincial Government, chiefs, church leaders, and tribal leaders that they respect the Auki Communiqué and will allow Malaita to work with the country traditional partners.
The premier said the MP himself was part of the delegation that was in Auki for the consultation talks and to learn that the particular MP is behind the company does not go down well with MPG.
“Whatever memories he still has on that meeting, he must be reminded that it was his deputy prime minister that echoed the sentiments I just uttered,’ Suidani said.
Knowing that the visibility study covers Baegu Asifola constituency, the premier reminded the MP that Baegu Council of Chiefs has made a resolution denying any development from PRC to enter their tribal lands.
“The resolution is still effective today as revealed by the MPA for Ward 11 Elijah Asilaua, himself being the vice-chairperson of the Baegu Council of Chiefs.”
“I would like to remind the MP that he should know that the national government through the SIG National Transport Core Initiative NTCI is embarking on a multi-million dollar comprehensive road, bridges and ferry transport system covering Malaita, Guadalcanal and Western provinces.”
“MPG has been informed and is ready to assist the government and the traditional donors with this important project.”
“Malaita Province is strongly featured in the NTCI and its coverage includes the North Eastern Road.”
“I would also want to remind all leaders of Malaita Province that the way forward for the development of the province is through working together and not against each other.”
“Development of our public infrastructure should not be carried out in a manner that is secretive.”
“It must be carried out in a manner that is transparent, accountable, and more importantly with respect and dignity to our people, their tribes, and resources.”
“The old way of doing things must be phased out in order for new ways to come in.”
“No longer must Malaita Province entertain old habits and outdated business models,” the premier said.
Tribes in Baegu Asifola upon hearing the secretive road visibility study voiced out their concern about the lack of clarity in the way the study is conducted and arranged.
They urged the MP to clarify who authorized their tribal lands to be surveyed without due consultation.
Danny Belo of Langane said that his tribe does not welcome the Chinese survey company.
Similarly, leaders of the Asanao tribe in Ata’a East Fataleka also raised their concern on this proposed road development and would like to inform the national MP that they are standing firm with Premier Suidani within the spirit of the Auki Communique.
Not only that but leaders of Fera’abu Ausamae tribe also informed this paper that they are not supporting any development that comes silently like a thief in their customary lands without the knowledge of the tribal leaders.
This paper was reliably informed that the three tribes opposed to China-funded development in Baegu Asifola have ownership rights over large sways of land that the proposed road development would pass through.
By WILSON SAENI