2 Mar 2006

Solomons call for observers to monitor PM's election

2:06 pm on 2 March 2006

A former Solomon Islands governor-general, Sir Baddeley Devesi, says foreign observers should stay until a government has been formed after next month's elections.

Sir Baddeley, who was the first governor-general after independence in 1978, has told the Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation that it is crucial for election observers to remain after the elections.

He says this allows them to see for themselves what causes the political instability.

Sir Baddeley says he has seen how political parties no longer mean anything once the election result is in and new members from outside Honiara are being lobbied.

After the 2001 election some observers extended their stay to witness the election of a new prime minister.

This followed the post-coup election in 2000 when Manasseh Sogavare was chosen as prime minister in a controversial vote.