The Medal and Awards Committee has made a mockery of the country’s medals and awards by awarding Cross of SI Medal to Tim Matthews, a Queen’s Counsel who lives and practises in Queensland.
Tim Matthews QC has never served on the Judiciary of SI and has never worked in any government departments or served any community in the country.
Tim Matthews QC flies in and out of SI to represent his Clients for which he receives hefty fees.
It has surfaced in a High Court litigation file that Tim Matthews has refused to accept deduction of non-resident withholding tax from his invoice. This speaks volume of the character of the man whom the Medal and Awards Committee has awarded the medal.
In 2019 Tim Matthews represented Prime Minister Sogavare and Our Party when the Leader of Opposition challenged the election of the Prime Minister. That is a service which Tim Matthews rendered to the Prime Minister personally and Our Party.
There are many local and overseas Magistrates and Judges who have served and been serving in our Courts who have not been recognised in terms of Medal and Awards.
There are also many local lawyers who have been serving in Government legal departments (like the Attorney General’s Chambers, Office of DPP and Office of Public Solicitor) and statutory bodies who have not been awarded any medal.
It is understood that the Medal and Awards Committee makes decision on recommendations made to it by nominators, but the final decision rests with the Committee. The Committee has all the discretion to decline any recommendation which lacks merit.
In the case of Tim Matthews, the Committee should have consulted the National Judiciary and the SI Bar Association.
By awarding medals to a person who does not deserve the medal makes a mockery of the awards and diminishes the value and significance of the medals.
Matthew C Wale, MP