Rights Group demands $6,750,000 for 27 lives lost at sea
By EDDIE OSIFELO
A local Human Rights group in the country is appealing to the Government to pay a total of SBD$6,750,000 as compensation to the families of the 27 people who lost their lives at sea recently.
One person is valued at $250,000 each.
The 27 people washed overboard MV Taimareho between Guadalcanal and Malaita on 3rd April when the ship encountered big waves and strong winds associated to Cyclone Harold.
The trip was part of the Government’s repatriation plan to allow people to leave Honiara to their villages due to the threat of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
A spokesperson for A.K.S General Human Rights Consultancy Services, Chief Alfred Karuheu Supo Uou stated the demand in a letter delivered to Special Secretary to Prime Minister, Ombudsman, Governor General, Opposition Office, MP for Small Malaita, General Manager of West Are Are Constituency Shipping Company, Director of Disaster Management and the Captain of MV Taimareho 1 this week.
Karuheu said the very agency of the above valuation is to resolute a humanitarian problem to avoid genocide in the international court of justice claims that could value and maximised at $1 million per human life.
He said above valuation amount stated in the subject matter is to be calculated on life expectancy time’s number of years 55 to 60 years average time’s daily livelihood term cash value, starting on the present day and into the long term future.
Currently, the government has launched two separate investigations into this incident.
The first investigation comprises a two-part investigation by the Solomon Islands Maritime Safety Administration (SIMSA).
The first part is already commenced – the preliminary investigation into the tragic incident in which the 27 passengers were washed overboard from MV Taimareho. A Marine Investigation Officer has been appointed by the Director of SIMSA in accordance with the Shipping Act 1998, and Shipping (Marine Inquiries and Investigations) Regulations 2011.
The second part involves the Commissioning of a ‘Board of Marine Inquiry’ by the Minister under the Act to conduct a formal enquiry into the incident. The Board of Marine Enquiry will commence its work following the appointment by the Minister of its Chairperson and two members.
The second investigation is criminal investigation commissioned by the Commissioner of Police as a result of suspicious deaths. This will involve interviews of passengers, crews, shipping company and other persons or bodies of interest to establish facts resulting in suspicious deaths.
These investigations will look into the legality of certain actions or decisions taken or not taken leading to the ship departing Honiara on the night of 2nd April 2020. It will also look into the incident itself and the post-incident activities. The findings and recommendations of these investigations will be presented to the relevant authorities.
These two investigations will provide adequate assurance into the cause of the incident.
Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare said some people are calling for Commission of Inquiry in social media, how he said it will take lengthy period before answers are made.