BY SAMIE WAIKORI
Former provincial secretary of Malaita, Fredrick Fa’abasua has spoken out against false claims by the non-executive of the province directed against him.
The non-executives have included Mr Fa’abasua in allegations listed in their reasons for their motion of no confidence against Premier Daniel Suidani and his MARA government.
The accusations by the non-executives say “the premier directly appointed Reach Consultancy, a firm owned by the former PS Mr Fredrick Fa’abasua to work on the ‘15 years Malaita Development Aspiration’ by-passing the normal tender compliance and procurement processes.
“Further still, the acting PS David Filia Tuita was conveniently by-passed by the premier to allow REACH consultancy to proceed without signing a formal binding contract following the executive’s approval.
“Consequently, the consultancy fee of $SBD60,000 awarded by the premier ($SBD32,000 of which has been paid to the REACH consultancy firm) constitutes an illegal payment.”
Responding to the accusations, Fa’abasua, who is the director of Reach Consultancy firm, said his firm has a signed contract with MPG, not MARA government as alleged and it signed on the October 10, 2022.
“Where do I get the approval and authority before signing the contract? The original executive decision to engage someone to work on the Malaita Development Aspiration 2050 was made on 18 June 2020.
“However, this was not done and so, on 23 September 2022, the MARA executive met and further cemented that decision thereby requesting Reach consultancy firm to work on this matter.
“I was then formally conveyed that decision by the premier’s office on 07 October 2022. When receiving the letter, I then raised the issue of procurement with the premier’s office.
“Due to the urgency of this task that needs to be done as partners are waiting upon the MARA Government, the premier formally writes to the Provincial Secretary acting as the Chairman of the Provincial Tender Board asking for a waiver of the procurement process base on the urgency.
“This received the approval from the PS acting. It was only then that I went on to sign the contract,” he said.
Fa’abasua said his team has delivered the task given and formal presentation of a copy of the Malaita Development Fifteen Years Aspirations was made to MARA executive at the provincial chamber on November 28, 2022.
He said the plan is the first of its kind for Malaita province that links with other greater plans of the Solomon Islands government, regional and international plans.
Fa’abasua said although the mover of the motion saw it fit to put this as part of their allegations, there is one more truth that the public needs to understand here.
“Anyone in his right mine will not go around and publicly claim that if the motion of no confidence is passed then I and my firm will still be engaged by the newly formed government.
“These statements were echoed at a public meeting at Kilusakwalo on Sunday 29 January 2022 even without my knowledge and consent.
“What a hypocrite! I said this because in the first place my name and firm has been tarnish because of what he and his team proposed in their motion.
“Yet, in their effort to garner public support, my name and firm was again used to score political points and public support.
“This is not good politics to say the least,” he said.