4 Aug 2006

Solomons ministers asked to explain dissenting stance

3:23 pm on 4 August 2006

A Solomon Islands government caucus is now into its second day with two ministers being asked to explain positions that appear to clash with government policy.

Two days ago, the Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, was reported to have demanded the resignation of three of his ministers.

Last night, Mr Sogavare publicly stated that he was yet to decide whether the commerce minister, Francis Billy Hilly, and the national development minister, Gordon Darcy Lilo, should be asked to leave cabinet.

A third minister, Toswell Kaua, was yesterday back in his office after meeting the prime minister.

One of the conditions that the Prime Minister is pushing for is for Mr Billy Hilly to revoke a memorandum of understanding, which his National Party signed with the China's Communist party last year.

Solomon Islands recognises Taiwan and Mr Sogavare is to lead a large delegation to Taipei next week.