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FORMER Leader of Opposition Matthew Wale has expressed his lack of surprise at the Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet’s (OPMC) recent misrepresentation of his well-documented comments regarding the issue of state government in Parliament.

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The CARE coalition leader said the OPMC’s attempt to reframe the narrative came after CARE’s third launch in the Western Province took them by surprise.

OPMC’s framing attempted to place Wale as an opposer of federalism.

However, Wale described OPMC’s efforts as ‘weak’ and ‘misleading’.

Wale pointed out that the responsibility for implementing State government rests with any sitting government, questioning their commitment to such reforms.

“DCGA had more years than any other Government ever had. They had the numbers to bring forward meaningful change regarding the state government. They even had seven out of eight Guadalcanal MPs that served under Sogavare and only one Guadalcanal MP was in the Opposition. Yet, what did they do? They brought in a half-cooked bill during the last days of Parliament. Does this reflect a genuine commitment to federalism?” Wale questioned.

Wale pointed out that even some senior Government MPs spoke against federalism during the TRC debates.

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“It was aired on SIBC, FB and one can simply get a copy of the hansard in parliament to listen to the opposing statements to federalism by Government ministers themselves,” he said.

Hon. Wale said that the Government’s lip service to federalism as reflected in the Bill’s poor quality was the reason for opposing the Bill.

“I opposed the Government’s Bill because it did not reflect well on a matter that was of highly importance. This is all well documented. It is also well documented that our support was only granted when the Prime Minister took onboard our amendments. I humbly suggest OPMC to go read the Hansard records or watch the video on the Parliament’s Facebook page,” Wale stated.

The former Opposition Leader said the last 10 years Sogavare and most of the MPs in DCGA have controlled government and simply played politics with the state government issue.

Wale said they received the final draft federal constitution in 2018 but did nothing about it.

“This is the typical characteristic of DCGA, one of deception. But Solomon Islanders are sick and tired of Sogavare and DCGA’s politics of deception,” he said.

Wale said CARE supports federal/state government but will further amend the constitution to enable the people to decide the matter in a national referendum.

“This is to safeguard against Sogavare and DCGA’s deceptive politics on this very important matter,” he said.

Wale concluded that OPMC’s poor attempt to reframe the issue only sheds light once more on a DCGA’s history to bring any real meaningful legislative change to Solomon Islands.


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