BY BARNABAS MANEBONA
IT is said that now is the proper time for national government to repatriate citizens in Honiara to their provinces having Solomon Islands already registering positive Coronavirus (Covid-19) cases.
When Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare called for repatriation early March this year, there was still no Covid-19 case in the country. Now having confirmed cases in the country, Premier Stanley Manetiva of Central Islands Province (CIP) from his view said it is just proper for repatriation to take place.
However since the early repatriation resulting also in the tragic loss of 27 lives on MV Taimareho at Are’Are, it is pointed out that the government is not mentioning any such move again of repatriating citizens purposely to reduce the population in Honiara in order to help in measures of control.
“My view in this time of situation is that it is just proper repatriation should take place,” said Manetiva.
“People after repatriating early this year have been returning back to Honiara on which funds should be available again to send them back to the provinces.
“On that note, hospitals and clinics in all provinces must have their quarantine and isolation centres.
“Also, before repatriation takes place, some small economic plans must be in place for the people.
“People must participate in fisheries and agriculture small scale projects such as planting of kava, ginger and cassava farms.
“My point, SIG must not just repatriate people back home. They must give them activities to keep them busy during this time, more on participatory.
“For repatriation, no other people from different provinces should go to other provinces as well as they must go back to their home of origin.”