The Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare on Tuesday in Parliament labelled the public servants or maybe some members of his party or the DCGA Coalition as “LUNATICS” over the leakage of his DCGA/CHINA Security Deal. Prior to that he called the citizens of Solomon Islands whose entrusted power he exercises as “TOM DICK AND HARRY” for demanding to be consulted on the proposed plan of DCGA to extend the Parliament term to 5 years. Is this the kind of language expected of anyone holding that top post and exercising people’s official power on their behalf? There is no longer any diplomacy nor respect from this Prime Minister and from the DCGA for the people who put them in power and for those manning the public institutions of the Sovereign Independent State of Solomon Islands when it comes to the China/Solomon Islands diplomatic relations. There are no boundaries for where this new friend can operate, it is allowed to break the laws of the sovereign state of Solomon Islands and get away with it. Where are you taking Solomon Islands DCGA and OUR Party secretively and in a very non-transparent, non-consultative and non-accountable manner stepping on the democratic rights of the citizen of Solomon Islands, encroaching into the unlimited power and authority of the State of Solomon Islands in favour of China.
Transparency Solomon Islands commends the right-thinking Public Officer/Political Appointee, rogue politician, or those to the proposed China/DCGA security deal for leaking it out. You are to be congratulated, for you alone know just how serious such a deal would be to the people of Solomon Islands, their human rights, democratic rights, legal, political, and civil rights enshrined in the Constitution. Go rogue a few more times to protect our country’s democracy, way of life etc. on what other deals are being agreed to behind closed doors.
From available information Transparency Solomon Islands is of the view that China/DCGA Security Deal threatens the very core of Solomon Islands existence as a Sovereign Independent State. Through this deal the DCGA Executive government is selling the sovereignty of Solomon Islands as a commodity to the Chinese Communist Party. For the very areas that is being given to them is the core function of the State. For this reason, Transparency Solomon Islands congratulates you as responsible public officers, you are not “LUNATICS”. Through the leakage the citizens of this country can work out for themselves who the real “LUNATICS” are.
Transparency Solomon Islands is concerned that despite the fact that Prime Minister has been a member of parliament for over 20 years now, being a Prime Minister 4 times, and many parliamentarians being there for years, they do not have a good understanding of the Public Service, no do they understand the difference between State and Government which is probably why citizens have been labelled “Tom, Dick and Harry” and now Officers as “lunatics”.
Transparency Solomon Islands in relation to the leaked deal reminds the DCGA government and the Prime Minister and those around him that Public Service is “Public Institution” publicly funded and not a DCGA funded Institution. The role and functions of these public institutions of the State that of serving the needs and interest of Solomon Islands, its people, resources, environment, and security. The State of Solomon Islands is a political association that establishes and exercises sovereign jurisdiction within our defined territorial boundaries. It encompasses all public bodies and exercises impersonal authority representing the permanent interest of society rather than the partisan sympathies of any group of temporary politicians which is what this deal is about. It exercises authority through a set of permanent institutions and one of which is the public service. The days of healthy and constructive discussion, consultative engagement and the accommodation of citizens view is no longer practiced by DCGA led government nor the Prime Minister, leaks like these will continue and must continue to protect people and country.
This is one instance where the public officers who leaked this deal should not be labelled “lunatics”. Instead, they should be awarded a medal for bravery, responsibility, transparency, and accountability for they have best interest of Solomon Islands as a sovereign independent democratic state at heart. The Prime Minister has only himself to blame for this leak. His leadership continues to be non-transparent; schemes and policies are only for the interest of DCGA to stay in power and the China Security Deal is for him and his political party OUR Party to continue to ignore citizens voices whilst staying in power. Every time there is a leak, DCGA cries foul and blames “Civil Servant Lunatics, Tom, Dick and Harry and foreign governments, except China. But the blame lies squarely on the behaviour, conduct and attitude of DCGA coalition in the exercise of citizens and State’s official and unlimited power and authority. For exposing this deal Transparency Solomon Islands thanks those that the Prime Minister has labelled “Lunatics” for leaking such a controversial deal, a deal that is treating our sovereignty as a commodity for sale.
The DCGA Executive Government and China in relation to this deal have knowingly misinformed the world about this deal saying it is the request of the people of Solomon Islands. DCGA Executive Government is not the people or citizens of Solomon Islands, nor is it a permanent part of Solomon Islands as an Independent State like citizens, nor is China its partner in this proposed Security deal. The DCGA is composed of the temporary politicians who can be voted out, governments that can be replaced, re-modelled, reformed, sized down or up. For such a deal that is selling our sovereignty people/citizen being the permanent part of the Independent State of Solomon Islands must have a say. For a four-time Prime Minister with his four-time Social Order policy performance failures who now through this deal sells our sovereignty to a foreign authoritarian regime is completely unacceptable and deplorable. The Executive Government that he leads now proposes to sell the sovereignty of Solomon Islands to a foreign force to deal with the impact of those chronic leadership and Executive Government policy, program, and budget failures. This is not only unacceptable but scandalous whilst very wrong. There are other ways of dealing with people’s frustrations, better options to avoid protest and ensure people and their property are safe and secure.
Transparency Solomon Islands is concerned that the DCGA is striking such a deal with a country that is an authoritarian regime with a very bad record of human rights. The clamp down at Tiananmen Square, the most recent Hong Kong protests, and China Communist Party’s responses should concern all citizens of Solomon Islands, especially when for crowd control our police force are trained by China on the use of guns. DCGA government through this deal is declaring war on its own citizens using foreign force, for there is no war anywhere nearby other than our own disgruntled people. With the numbers DCGA has gotten brazen, more comfortable but leading the country down the pathway to a totalitarian or authoritarian regime.
The Public Service is public institution of the State of Solomon Islands, publicly funded and not DCGA funded. Like any other public institution its role is to serve the needs and interest of this country through the government that is in power. This means the whole of government [Legislature, Judiciary, and the Executive Government]. In the past and prior to the ethnic tensions, permanent secretaries and other public officials do openly challenge Ministers and Executive Government that is exercising government official power for decisions/policies that do not serve the interest and needs of the country or threaten in any way the sovereignty of Solomon Islands as an independent State. For this reason and for the gravity of what the deal entails, whoever leaked the deal to the media is doing the right thing by the people of Solomon Islands who pay their salary.
Transparency Solomon Islands urges the DCGA led Executive Government of Solomon Islands to abandon the leaked and secretive deal it intends to have with China.
It is obvious that there has not been any cost benefit analysis of this deal and what threats to our sovereignty. Will the Chinese Police and Military officers be engaged as Royal Solomon Islands Police Force and have all those legal powers under our law. No one knows for the deal was conducted secretively and behind closed doors so we can assume it is a bad deal. Transparency Solomon Islands calls on DCGA to make public the terms and conditions of that deal. Furthermore, TSI asks Chinese Foreign Affairs officials to stop misinforming the world and say that it is the people of Solomon Islands that have requested this deal. This is a total lie and that the temporary politicians who are in DCGA do not constitute the entirety of the people of Solomon Islands and nor have they sought the views of the people for you to say they request this deal.
In this deal listed in the Executive Government’s Statement of Business before the parliament, the Chinese Government will provide the following: –
- Armed Police and armed Military personnel and other Law Enforcement personnel to Solomon Islands.
- The Military Base will provide logistic replenishment and act as a stopover for military vessels transiting in Solomon Islands.
The Central function of any Sovereign State is the maintenance of Social Order. Giving away these functions of the State is no more than selling the sovereignty of Solomon Islands as an independent State. As such government must consult the citizens of this country for such a big move. The leadership of the current Executive Government has ignored and chosen to move Solomon Islands away from what our founding fathers intended this country to be, where government power can be and should be held in check from encroaching into the absolute and unlimited authority of the State – A Constitutional Government – A system of government that operates within a set of legal and institutional constraints that both limit its power and protect individual liberty. This deal will certainly kill that.
In just over 2 years and six months of this relationship Solomon Islands citizens are witnessing an Executive Government [DCGA] putting pieces together and being supported by China to extinguish democracy and set the country up as a TOTALITARIAN STATE bringing about all-encompassing politicization and in effect, extinguishing civil society all together. But are we surprised about how China has behaved in this country and that it would behave differently to how it operates in other countries within our region and outside? Not at all but here in Solomon Islands China has behaved badly and over what it does in other countries it has diplomatic ties with. It not only moves to take control of the economy but the sovereignty of Solomon Islands as an independent democratic State. Pervasive influence, manipulation of information, shaping the foreign media on behalf of Solomon Islands, shaping discourse, neutering debate, direct and indirect political interference using captured politicians, elites, targeting investment for political influence, supporting pro-China cronies and MPs and all this for what? It is for the CHINA STATE CAPTURE OF SOLOMON ISLANDS SOVEREIGNTY AND THE ANNIHILATION OF OUR DEMOCRACY. This deal is not Sovereign-Upholding, non-transparent and worse still it is not a Corruption -Resistant deal. Transparency Solomon Islands congratulates and commends the leakers of this deal for the great service you have done to this country.