BY GARY HATIGEVA
FORMER Prime Minister, Gordon Darcy Lilo who brought the bill on the now PPI Act, suggested there is an oversight on the new Electoral Act that will likely undermine the Political Parties Integrity Act 2014, particularly, on the existence of the Political Parties Commission.
The former Prime Minister blasted the current government over what he described as a serious error from the Commission and the government’s part.
Lilo agreed that this is a serious oversight in the part of the government and those tasked with the responsibility over the new Electoral Act, including the AG Chamber.
“This is a huge error from the part of those responsible, a big mess done on in this important system
“There is no need for us to argue about that as it shows poor administrative performances and is a miss-courage in their responsibilities over this matter,” Lilo stressed.
He added that the repealing of Part 2 alone is a total negligence in the part of the responsible draftsperson and the relevant officers dealing with this important matter.
“Otherwise the intention to repeal is wrong and has no bearing in a policy rational in relations to elections and political parties,” the Former PM said.
He explained that the intention will discourage and weaken the roles and responsibilities of political parties and the system in an overall perspective, so as intentions to encourage good governance, and political stability.
When asked if he thinks the SIEC could well be the option to take up the Party Commission’s roles and responsibilities, Lilo clarified that nurturing political parties and the management of elections are two different matters, and should not be confused or put together.
Recently, the number of new parties launched has increased and many are waiting to be registered under the PPI Act’s Commission but, questions were also being raised as to whether the existence of the commission is legal, now that it was removed following the repealing of its establishing mechanisms.
Referring to the establishment of the Commission and the Act itself, Lilo further explained that the Party Commission through the PPI Act, was orchestrated to help facilitate and manage political parties while at the same time nurture their integrities and related matters.
Lilo then suggested that the only way out of this mess is for the government to quickly take up an amendment bill to amend or take out the section that repeals Part 2 of the PPI Act 2014.
He further added that its current status now can affect the next year’s national general elections, and there will be room for past political negativities to come back and haunt the system.
Meanwhile, yesterday’s attempts to get comments from the Attorney General’s Chamber was unsuccessful, but the Solomon Islands Electoral Commission when contacted, admitted to the error and confirmed that they will be bringing to parliament a bill, for amendments on the oversight.