SIG rejects ACT OF EVIL article, saying it pays for Suidani’s medical in Australia
“ACT OF EVIL” BACKFIRES
The “Act of Evil” news headline in the Island Sun newspaper on Friday 28 May suggesting the Government ignored Premier Daniel Suidani’s request for overseas medical treatment is grossly misleading and is a desperate attempt to tarnish the Government’s efforts to send the Premier to Brisbane, Australia.
A statement from the Ministry of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening (MPGIS) today clarified that the Government through its responsible Officials including the Office of the Prime Minister were responding to the Premier’s request for medical treatment with care to support the Premier’s poor health condition since January 2021.
A doctor’s report dated 6 January recommending the Premier to seek overseas medical treatment was formally conveyed to the Minister of MPGIS Rollen Seleso on 26 January informing him of the Premier’s medical condition.
On 28 January, the Permanent Secretary to MPGIS, Stanley Pirione informed the Provincial Secretary Frederick Fa’abasua in a letter of the grant of Approval to Leave the Country to enable Premier Suidani to travel to Brisbane.
“Our Minister has granted approval for the request and that Hon.Suidani to attend medical treatment as stated in the request. It is hoped that such trip be treated as on “medical grounds” only since the Minister is grossly concern about the health of the Premier,” the letter stated.
On 29 January, PS Pirione further wrote to Mr Fa’abasua informing him that the Ministry is processing the cost of travel and medical treatment in Brisbane as provided for in the Premier’s entitlement including daily travel allowance (overseas) and other entitlements.
“The financial assistance may not be enough taken into consideration the dire state of our finances (due to Covid19) but we hope it will help contribute to the total cost of your medical trip and treatment,” Pirione said in his letter.
In February, the MPGIS paid $51,000.00 to Premier Suidani to assist with his travel expenses to Brisbane but he did not travel as scheduled and only travel in early May for reasons only kept to himself and his advisor (s).
In terms of support, the National Government is responsible to assist Premiers and even Members of Provincial Assemblies (MPAs) to seek medical attention overseas.
During initial discussions, the Premier was assured that the National Government is obliged to support his overseas treatment.
He, however, refused the SIG offer after seeking advice from his advisor (s) despite attempts by officials from MPGIS to contact him regarding his overseas treatment.
“This behavior led the MPGIS to believe that Suidani does not want to lose face if his trip is sponsored by the DCGA Government, which he keeps on opposing on petty political issues,”
“The worrying issue for Suidani is that he can express his political views against the Government that paid his salaries but his personal health should be his priority rather than snooping to poor advice from his henchmen” the statement said.
The MPGIS previously assisted a number of Premiers attending medical treatment overseas.
Meanwhile, the Government is paying a total of AU$ 121,663.00 (approximately SB$748,227.00) for Suidani’s medical bill to Mater Hospital in Brisbane, excluding travel and accommodation expenses.
“The article did not come as a surprise to MPGIS since the Premier and his political cohorts’ continue to rant over unnecessary political issues against the DCGA,” the statement said.
“In fact the Island Sun reporter Eddie Osifelo and his unnamed source are committing an “Act of Evil” by propagating lies and half-truths to mislead and stir unnecessary debate,” the statement added.
ENDS/// Government Communications Unit
Editor’s Note: Premier Suidani today released a statement that he is currently in Taiwan for medical treatment.