Parliament votes to extend SOPE for another 4 months

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The National Parliament tonight voted to extend the State of Public Emergency (SOPE) for another four months as of the 25th of July 2020.

Parliament needed two-thirds of the house to vote in favour of the motion (32 of 47 MPs) of the MPs. In a divisional vote, 42 MPs voted for the motion whilst 5 abstained as announced by the Speaker of Parliament Patteson Oti.

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The motion seeks the Parliament to approve the proclamation by His Excellency the Governor General declaring a state of public emergency exists in Solomon Islands on 25th July 2020 pursuant to Section 16 subsection 3 of the Constitution and that Parliament approves that state of public emergency shall continue in force until the expiration of a period of 4 months, or unless revoked earlier by a resolution of Parliament pursuant to Section 16 subsection 6 of the Constitution.

Speaking tonight to answer some of the issues raised by the Opposition, Prime Minister said the country is vulnerable to the pandemic and the last thing to do is to play politics.

MPs’ have been debating the motion since yesterday after it was moved on Monday and majority had supported the extension.

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The SOPE is now enforced in the country as part of the government efforts to keep the covonavirus (COVID-19) out of the country or manage it if there is a case.

Solomon Islands is only one of the 12 countries in the world that is still COVID-19 free.

The extension means that the current SOPE will run until November 25.

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