30 Apr 2004

Solomon Islands officials say displaced people still need food

10:53 am on 30 April 2004

Solomon Islands officials say people on the remote Weathercoast will need to be supplied with food rations for at least another six months.

Ethel Sigamanu, who's the Chairperson of the National Disaster Council, says people who've returned to the region, since the arrest of the renegade rebel leader, Harold Keke, are now struggling to survive.

The Council began bringing hundreds of displaced people back to the area, at the end of last year.

Miss Sigamanu says, based on reports she's received, supply rations have run out and people are just living each day as it comes.

She says the law deems the current situation to be man-made, and so the Council can't step in.

But Miss Sigamanu says the Council is still looking for ways to help.

"We understand the situation that they are in, having dealt with them in the past. We are trying our best to convene a meeting with the Guadalcanal Province, who has a provincial disaster management committee with this issue."

Miss Sigamanu says it may be best for the provincial committee to deal with the problem with technical support from her council.