Malaita for Democracy (M4D) movement on behalf of the Malaita people on Wednesday met a team from the International Republican Institute (IRI) based in Washington DC in Auki, Malaita Province.
The IRI team is visiting Auki as part of a consultation to gather the views of the provincial government, churches and other civil society groups within the province.
The purpose of the visit and consultation is to pave a way forward in engagement with the US government and its partners.
Some of the areas covered during this discussion are; engagements of IRI within Malaita, how IRI can contribute in the development of the structures of the province, governance and leadership.
During the consultation, IRI visiting team also informed M4D they have been engaging in a lot of activities especially with programs related to school leader’s development, community governance and civil society networking and previously supporting the Bougainville Referendum.
M4D President Knoxly Atu told this paper he is happy with the IRI visit and the dialogue engagement yesterday.
Mr Atu said Malaita as the most populated province in the country welcomes the consultation where he spoke highly of their efforts especially in consulting with M4D.
He then assures the group that M4D is a willing partner to work along as they continue to support the development of the rural Malaitans.
“Seeing that M4D is continuing with its advocacy activities and managed to visit some of the rural communities it is time that all civil society networks must engaged with the IRI to see that our civil society and pressure groups must be strengthen to carry on their role,” he said.
IRI program officer Ms. Clare Hubbard during the consultation said IRI truly appreciates the efforts of the M4D advocating on behalf of the people and wish to encourage M4D to continue its good work.
Ms Hubbard also thanked all other members of M4D who were present at the consultation and further reiterated that they are here to support.
IRI will start its engagement in March especially with the people within the province.
BY WILSON SAENI