Housing rentals in Makira questioned

Kirakira station, in Makira/Ulawa Province
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The Member of the Makira Ulawa Provincial Assembly for Ward 5 in Arosi 2, Jackson Sunaone who leads the non-Executive Members, claims a $3000 monthly Housing Allowance paid to Provincial Ministers is not right.

He says with the Parliamentary Entitlement Commission determination on Provincial Assembly Members’ Salaries and Allowances, the Housing Allowance given to the Makira Ulawa Provincial Executive Members is not right because they are housed in Provincial Government Houses in Kira Kira, the Provincial Capital.

Mr Sunaone says the instruction to this effect by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening is a gross defiance of what the Provincial Assembly Members’ Salaries and Allowances Determination says, so the practice is illegal.

He says the Attorney General and the Ministry of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening Legal Advisor ought to provide advice and opinion to correct this deemed legal anomaly.

And the Provincial Assembly’s Repeal Intent of Ward Development Ordinance and the Makira Ulawa Province Investment Corporation Ordinance, Mr Sunaone says although the intention is affected by the Assembly’s respective passed Resolutions, legally they cannot be enforced, unless or until, a Repeal Bill is brought before the Provincial Legislation for passage.

Mr Sunaone says further more for the Government of Premier Julian Maka’a to bulldoze the respective Repeal Resolution in the recent Provincial Assembly meeting implies total defiance and ignorance of the following sitting Provincial Assembly Resolutions:-

  1. Ward Development Authority: In the period of 2017 and 2018, the Makira Ulawa Provincial Assembly sternly resolved that the policy advocated institution of Ward Development Committees to undertake Participatory Planning and Development in the Provincial Wards, for legal reasons, be best left in the hands and functions of the Ward Development Authority.

Therefore, he says to now put into action the recent Provincial Assembly passed resolution to repeal the WDA Ordinance bears legal implications, hence to allow WDC to now take charge in the Wards is not right.

And Mr Sunaone accuses the Provincial Capacity Development Fund of the Ministry of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening of driving its Governance Roles and Functions on the Makira Ulawa Community Governance Framework from the Province’s legally framed Governance Structure.

He calls on the Maka’a Administration to honour and respect the Province’s legally framed Governance Structure because PCDF’s action connotes a breach of the Province’s Governance Laws and may attract a legal challenge upon the binding Ordinances of the Provincial Legislature.

On repealing the Makira Ulawa Provincial Investment Corporation (MUPIC), Mr Sunaone describes the recently passed resolution to repeal the MUPIC Ordinance as a complete contradiction of the 2020 sitting passed resolution to suspend MUPIC’s operations to enable a review being carried out.

He says on that basis, the entities management was stripped off and functions and operations come directly under the Provincial Government Administration.

Mr Sunaone concludes by saying therefore, to go by the recently passed resolution does not go down well with the anticipated intentions of the 2020 resolution, which he regards as noble in its sense.

In response, Premier Julian Maka’a says the Makira Ulawa Provincial Government has not repealed any ordinances so far.

He says what had happened was to procedurally attend to requirements for such legislations to be repealed, amended, reviewed or invalidated and annulled.

Mr Maka’a says these ordinances must be acquainted with developing governance and MUP must keep up with the changing face of socio-economic turns of this age.

He says Makira Ulawa Province must be on top of changing patterns of development, so “we must revisit not one but all ordinances for the sake of progress and unified approach to meet the demands of change.

“The Makira Ulawa Provincial Assembly member who raised the issues is a member of our House Business Committee, contributed in the resolution and voted in the Assembly, so it is incomprehensible why Mr Sunaone has decided to use the media”.

Premier Maka’a says his Government of Unity, Reform and Advancement is committed to bringing more tangible developments and benefits for “our people of Makira Ulawa people than engaging in media arguments”.

By George Atkin