PRIME Minister Rick Houenipwela has urged Malaita province to work extra hard to attract investment and development projects in order to provide for its increasing young population.
Prime Minister Houenipwela highlighted this during his speech at the 35th Malaita Province 2nd Appointed Day in Small Malaita, Monday this week.
The Prime Minister revealed that Malaita province alone accounts for 23 percent of the National Population estimate of 666,557.
“Five years ago, the population of Malaita was estimated at 152, 647. As at July 2018, it is estimated to be at 158,076, an additional population of 6,429 in five year. At that rate it means we are producing approximately 1,286 children per year. To educate our children this is equivalent to building 43 school classrooms per year, or nearly 4 new school classrooms each month,” he said.
The Prime Minister also highlighted that for Malaita;
(a) 78 percent of the population is below the age of 35 years: that is approximately 82,300 people;
(b) Of that group, 77 percent – that is 62,975 – is aged between 15 – 35years old.
“Taking the above statistics, almost 80% of Malaita population is below the age of 35 years old. In other words, only a small minority (approximately 20%) of the provincial population is above the age of 40 years,” he said.
The Prime Minister said the youth population in Malaita Province is at a staggering 80% of the total provincial population.
He said this provides the need for critical overview for driving important policy development decision-making; otherwise we will have a serious situation at hand.
“My good people of Malaita, this means we have to work extra hard to provide basic services, education and in health to cater for our people as the population density in Malaita remains the highest in the country,” he said.
“That is why I encourage my good people of Malaita to work extra hard to attract investment and development projects in order to provide for this huge young population.”