Panatina by-election

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Silence from Electoral office, home affairs ministry waiting, ward 12 residents still waiting

BY SAMIE WAIKORI

THERE is still no sign of any progress towards having a by-election for Panatina ward.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) yesterday admitted that they are still waiting for a go-ahead from the Electoral Office.

Meanwhile, Panatina ward is continuing on without any representation in the Honiara City Council (HCC) after their councillor died two years ago.

Panatina residents have made many media calls for relevant authorities to step in and usher in by-elections, but to date are still waiting.

Speaking to Island Sun yesterday, permanent secretary for MHA Mr George Palua blames the Electoral Office for the long wait.

“Yes, it’s our responsibility as well but the Electoral Office is the right people to advise me to give approval on when a date is suggested and make recommendation to the minister for authorising of the election.

“But at the moment I have not actually received a time table or a call for election to forward to the minister,” he said.

Palua also shared the residents’ sentiment on the need to have a representative in the council.

He said he’s not clear on the issues still there that prolonging the by-election.

“What I could only say was maybe it came down to the issue of the City Council at the moment as the minister still to deal with and conclude.

“Despite several call the minister already done, nothing much happening. When we call for meeting no one attends.

“We know the situation on the ground and we try to resolve that for the normal operation of the council before the election happens,” Palua said.

He said the ministry is aware of the matter and will continue to work closely with responsible authorities especially HCC to pursue the issue.

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