PRIME Minister Ricky Houenipwela successfully moved a special motion to adjourn Parliament until next Monday, March 26, 2018.
It was a motion supported by both sides of the House. The rationale is to give the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) a little time to delve into the $2 billion appropriation Bill 2018.
It’s a common sense approach except for one thing. There have been rumblings since the Prime Minister assumed office last December. As of this week, some in the know say the undercurrents have grown in intensity.
As such is it safe to assume that Hon Houenipwela, in agreeing to the special adjournment, is walking into a trap – a trap set by people within his own camp?
Politics is a cruel game.
Players can be enemies today but friends again tomorrow. There are elephants, though – people who never forget. Perhaps this is why keeping your enemies closer to your chest than friends makes a lot of sense. For it is almost impossible to gauge what is brewing from within, but easier to know your enemy’s movement.
As we have seen time and time again, it is those within that usually take the knife and plunge it from behind when their leader has a sense of misguided trust in them.
As a matter of fact, it is safe to suggest that any Prime Minister spends about 85 percent of his time watching his back.
As a result, very little gets done in terms of service delivery.
Depending on who plunges the dagger at the back of the Prime Minister this time, but one wonders why it is necessary for yet another change in government leadership in such a short time?
We barely have the time before the next election.
But even more concerning is the fact that the adjournment to March 26 is such a short time indeed before we hit the Constitutional crisis red button on April 1. True, April is universally a Fool’s Day but let us not be fooled by what it stands for especially by those advocating a change in leadership.
For us, the threat of a Constitutional crisis in in terms of spending public funds is real. By March 26, we have only five days in which to fix the figures and have the figures approved by Parliament.
Given how we treat time in Solomon Islands where the Solomon Time syndrome rules, five days is a very short time indeed. It is the people’s prayer that the elected MPs dispense with the Solomon Time addiction to move quickly in passing the Budget.
For if this is not done, the nation will grind to a halt.
Service delivery will also come to a stop.
The consequences would be unimaginable. It is not the kind of legacy any government in its right mind would want to leave behind.
The onus is on the opposing faction within the Solomon Islands DCC Government to put the nation’s interest before their own. Members of Parliament are elected every four years to serve the nation.
But there’s always a handful that has an agenda of its own. That handful is normally driven by the interest of a band of unelected officials whose interest is deeper than their pockets, often creating a survival kit based on the public purse.
One only hopes that we have seen the last of the perpetrators of these practices and that Prime Minister Houenipwela is allowed to do what he had already announced he intended to do for the remaining months before the national general election.
The most urgent task facing MPs now is to avoid a Constitutional crisis by passing the 2018 National Budget.