Numbers war between camps vying Malaita premier post continues

BY SAMIE WAIKORI

TUSSLE over numerical strength between the two rival camps in Auki vying to form the next provincial government of Malaita province continues.

Political lobbying began two weeks ago.

Rival camps led by Daniel Suidani and Elijah Asilaua are yet to confirm a stable number.

Since last week, Suidani’s camp claimed 24 MPAs at the camp, but the number dropped to 16 over the weekend and 13 yesterday.   

“At the moment we have only 13 confirm MPA at the camp. This is after losing some of the MPAs who had joined the camp in the past weeks.

“What we know is some of these vacated MPAs are still on the fence and we are still working to get them and others to join the camp.

“This is our hope, since we still have a week away from the election. Thus, we will see how we can go about consolidating our camp,” one MPA on Suidani’s camp said.

Asilaua’s camp yesterday claimed 23 MPAs at the camp. The camp reported to have gained impetus from the current lobbying as it continues.

The instability of numerical strength experienced on both camp shows the intensity of the current political lobbying as both seem to claim each other’s number.

An MPA, who was last week at Suidani’s camp is now claiming to be a neutral and not joining or affiliating to any of the rival camps.

The MPA has 2 other MPAs on his side and they are yet to decide on which camp to join.

He told SunAuki yesterday that they have their reasons to remain neutral at the moment and watch the lobbying as it develops.

“Last week, we were counted with Suidani’s camp, but after knowing our neutrality, they didn’t refer to us as confirmed MPAs at the camp.

“We are still working together with them and who knows if we would make up our mind to join them. For Asilaua’s camp, they are also claiming us due to our status,” he said.

The MPA said from now on until the provincial speaker’s election on Friday, they are yet to choose which of the rival camps to join for the premier’s election.

Since the Malaita provincial assembly entered camps two weeks ago, lobbying continues as camps are tussling for numerical strength to form the next government of Malaita province.

The election for the premier of Malaita province is next week and there is still time for lobbying. Thus, it is still premature at this stage to say which camp has the numerical strength.  

Yesterday, a total 31 out of 33 elected MPAs had sworn-in as MPAs of the Malaita provincial assembly. The other two will do so by Friday this week.

Also yesterday, nomination for the provincial speaker has opened and will take 3 days until election on Friday. The speaker will then decide on the election of the premier, hopefully next week.

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