The Solomon Star senior journalist had never interviewed the Secretary to Prime Minister Dr. Jimmy Rodgers as claimed by Transparency Solomon Islands (TSI).
Dr. Rodgers told the Solomon Star in an exclusive interview in response to yet another piece of factless article by Transparency Solomon Islands (TSI) on Sunday.
The article which was crafted to incite public anger against the government has again held no basis of truth in it according to Dr. Rodgers.
This paper understands that at no time their reporter interviewed Dr. Rodgers. That report was based on a press conference.
TSI claimed that with the interview he had with Andrew Fanasia of Solomon Star under the headline “SPM BLASTS TSI,” he admitted, he lied.
“I could not understand how TSI cooked up all these baseless and non-factual ideas to gain public attention,” Dr. Rodgers added.
He further stressed that the explanation given during the press conference was in response to Radio ABC correspondents in Honiara.
“I have stated clearly that there were 53 Solomon Islander nationals in China to board the repatriation flight 32 decide not to board the flight meaning only 21 nationals board the flight.
“The changing of mind by our nationals not to board the plane is not our problem so their seat in the plane is empty.
“So I think this is the only one I can think of they (TSI) said I lied to the nation,” he told this paper.
Dr. Rodgers said that TSI is now going out of its mandate and moving into stirring up a personal vendetta against government personnel.
“Has TSI now changing its face to become another political party,” he questioned.
He also made it clear that the government accepts criticism but criticism without any facts is not healthy.
This paper also understood that in the lead up to the China flight TSI come out publicly and actually called on the public to protest against the government and the flight.
When this paper asked Dr. Rodgers if inciting the public to protest is in line with what TSI stands for he said inciting the public is not what TSI stands for.
Dr. Rodgers said while he welcomes TSI criticisms the good news is the government is working very hard to make sure Solomon Islands is still a COVID-19 free country in the world.
“All the passengers coming in from China were quarantined and tested negative for COVID-19 isn’t this a lie or bad news TSI?” he questioned.
He further stressed that that now the Philippines is at the centre of the government’s discussion and all the quarantine protocols must be followed before our students can board their scheduled flight.
“I believe TSI can do better than this next time rather than fuelling hatred in these very unprecedented times,” he told this paper.