Failed shush attempt

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Malaita Premier Daniel Suidani.

A government Minister and a backbencher offered Malaita Premier $1m to ‘support China’

BY SAMIE WAIKORI

AUKI

Malaita premier Daniel Suidani has exposed an attempt by government to silence him from speaking out Malaita’s disappointment in DCGA’s China-switch.

Two Guadalcanal members of Parliament

[names withheld]

, one a government back-bencher and the other a minister, are implicated in Suidani’s damning revelation of ‘bribe attempt’.

Premier Suidani said last week he received a phone call from the back-bencher asking him to join the government’s China-cause. Suidani declined.

Over the weekend, he received a call from the government minister, who asked him to come over to Honiara for ‘talks on the matter’ regarding government’s newfound Beijing friend. Again, Suidani declined.

Suidani adds that during the two calls, he was offered $1 million to join and support national government’s newfound relationship with communist China. Suidani turned down the offer.

Yesterday, Premier Suidani brought this matter to the media in Auki.

He said he stands by his people of Malaita and their interest on this saga of Solomon Islands severing bilateral ties with Taiwan for communist China.

He points out that what the two Government MPs failed to consider is that he [Suidani] as a leader puts Malaita first in everything that he does in his capacity as Premier and as an individual.

He admits that Malaita province definitely needs money, hinting that the outcome might have been different had the two Guadalcanal MPs thought of donating such huge amount towards the Malaita province coffers.

“But if it is just for the purpose of bribing me, I will not accept.

“I’m here representing the people of this province and I will not let them down just for that million dollar.

“This is to let the government or whosoever to understand that I’m not just a flexible leader to be over-run,” he said.

Suidani rebukes national government, saying Sogavare’s DCGA should be ashamed of itself because their decision to switch was done without considering the provincial governments.

He adds maybe Western province and others support the China move, but not Malaita. He emphasises that his people have spoken out loud and clear, and his stand as a democratic leader is to represent his people’s interest.

On that note, he challenges MPs from Malaita province who were among those who voted in favour of China to listen to the interest of their people.

Suidani said he will not be swayed like a palm on the top of a mountain.

He said Malaitans call for democracy after national government’s decision to switch to communist China and he will stand by his people.

Attempts to get comments from government offices including the Prime Minister’s office were not successful before this paper went to press last night.