12 Aug 2003

Solomon Islands wants to retain control of civil rebuilding

3:29 pm on 12 August 2003

The Solomon Islands prime minister has appointed a taskforce to ensure that the rebuilding of the economy and the restoration of civil services remains under the control of the government.

Sir Allen Kemakeza says he has a good working relationship with the Australian-led intervention force and its focus is currently on disarmament.

But, Sir Allen says once that is dealt with, the agenda for rebuilding the country must come from Solomon Islanders.

"I have appointed a taskforce to look at the full package for the country, in which they will submit their recommendations for weighting and screening and monitoring."

And it will ensure that the full programme is from the Solomon Islands government and not what other people put it on for us.

Sir Allen says the taskforce comprises of three former prime ministers, including Bartholomew Ulafa'alu who will head the economic recovery plans, Francis Billy Hilly on the law and order sector and Manasseh Sogavare for the services programme.