Premier Suidani refuses to discuss Auki Communique over China’s investment

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Malaita Premier Daniel Suidani.
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By EDDIE OSIFELO

MALAITA Premier Daniel Suidani refused to discuss the Auki Communique that opposed any China’s investment in the province during the dialogue with national government in Honiara on Tuesday.

This came after the Malaita Members of Parliament raised the issue during the dialogue between Premier Suidani and Ministry of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening to iron out the difference over the warning letter issued on April 30.

Minister for Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening Rollen Seleso stated in the letter that Malaita provincial government faces suspension unless Premier Suidani stops contravening the Provincial Government Act 1997 through his actions.

Premier Suidani said this was not the purpose for him to attend the dialogue – to discuss the Auki Communique and China development in the province.

He asked the Malaita MPs to go down to Malaita to discuss the Auki Communique and their development projects.

The national Malaita MPs are Deputy Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga, Minister for Justice Makario Tagini, Minister for Development Planning Rex Ramofafia and Minister for Agriculture and Livestock Senley Levi Filualea.

Malaita was represented in the meeting by Premier Suidani and three MPAs from the Malaita Provincial Executive.

On the other hand, officials including Counsellor Yao Ming from the Chinese Embassy in Honiara made a special trip to Malaita at the invitation of two MP for Baegu Asifola, Tagini and MP for Fataleka, Ramofafia.

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The two MPs are members of the ruling Democratic Coalition Government for Advancement (DCGA).

The historical visit came after Solomon Islands cut its 30 years diplomatic ties from Republic of China (Taiwan) and switched to Peoples Republic of China last September.

This was revealed exclusively by China’s Acting Ambassador to Solomon Islands Yao Ming, Tuesday.

Malaita Province opposed the switch based on religious beliefs and came up with a Communique to oppose any China’s investment in the province.

Last year Suidani told the international media that Malaita province won’t accept any development loans from China, as concern rises over investments from Beijing.

However, Government Communication Unit reported that the Minister of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening Rollen Seleso and Malaita Premier Daniel Suidani have resolved recent differences during a meeting in Honiara on Tuesday.

The leaders have expressed their views and have reached a common understanding on issues raised which paves the way forward for further dialogue.

An official statement outlining the outcomes of the meeting will be released soon.

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