19 Feb 2007

Solomons Opposition urges parliament to heed re-armament concerns

7:50 pm on 19 February 2007

The Solomon Islands opposition says members of parliament should take heed of public concern about the government's plans to re-arm sections of the local police.

The opposition on Friday filed a motion of no-confidence against the Prime Minister which is expected to be debated either this Friday or next Monday.

It's the second motion of no-confidence in his leadership that Manasseh Sogovare has faced since being elected in May last year.

Last week, the government easily defeated a motion calling for the scrapping of Mr Sogovare's plan to re-arm Solomons police, 27 votes to 19 in the 50-seat house.

But opposition MP Edward Huniehu says widespread concern over the plan cannot be ignored.

"Unanimous support from the public outside parliament... And we only hope that members of parliament would listen to what the people are saying. All the provincial premiers, excluding Malaita, do not support re-armament of any section of the police either. So the message is coming out very clear."

Edward Huniehu