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Australian parliamentarians observe joint elections

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: Deputy High Commissioner Andrew Schoffel (2L) with Australian parliamentary delegation in Western Province at Noro Taiyo Election Station
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Five current Australian parliamentarians and one former Australian parliamentarian have been in Solomon Islands observing the 2024 Solomon Islands Joint Elections held on Wednesday 17 April 2024.

Federal Parliamentarians, Ms Kate Thwaites MP, Mrs Bridget Archer MP and Senator Andrew McLachlan CSC, and New South Wales Parliamentarians, Mr Stephen Bali MP and Mr David Mehan MP as well as former Federal Senator Anne McEwen OAM worked with Australian observation teams coordinated by the Australian High Commission in Honiara City, Guadalcanal, Western and Central Provinces.

Our parliamentarians’ presence during the election week demonstrates the close relationship between Australia and Solomon Islands, and Australia’s longstanding commitment to supporting democracy in our region.

At the invitation of the Solomon Islands Government, Australia has worked closely with the Solomon Islands Electoral Commission to support the election, providing SBD137 million in funding, including through partners – the Australian Electoral Commission and the United Nations Development Fund. In addition, the Australian Federal Police and Australian Defence Force are playing a crucial role in support of the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force providing security around the election period.

Our parliamentary observers will contribute to Australia’s broader election observer group supporting observations in voting and counting centres across 17 constituencies and in seven of the nine Solomon Islands provinces. They also join a contingent of Australian observers from the Australian National University (ANU) who are monitoring the elections jointly with a large team of 88 observers from the Solomon Islands National University (SINU). With the participation of parliamentarians this brings the total number of observers representing Australia to forty-three.

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Australian High Commissioner Rod Hilton said, “Australia is proud of our strong friendship with Solomon Islands and our shared commitment to democratic values. This sentiment is felt at the highest levels as exemplified by the participation of our parliamentarians in Solomon Islands’ Joint Election.”

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