16 Jun 2008

RAMSI facing compensation demands after traffic accident kills young woman in Honiara

5:36 am on 16 June 2008

The Regional Assistance Mission in Solomon Islands is now facing

compensation demands from the family of a young woman who was killed over the weekend in an accident involving a Samoan Police officer.

The woman was walking home on Saturday night when she was knocked down by a RAMSI police vehicle that went out of control at Ngossi ridge in Honiara.

There are allegations that driver was drunk at the time.

RAMSI has already paid thousands of dollars to assist the family fly the body home to her village and charter a boat to take relatives for the funeral.

But the family is also demanding compensation of nearly half-a-million-dollars.

The Prime Minister of Samoa has written a formal letter of condolence to the government and family of the deceased for the actions of its citizen working under RAMSI.

Radio New International understands RAMSI administration wants the Samoan government to handle the matter.

A second officer from Samoa who was a passenger in the vehicle and was badly injured in the accident had to be evacuated for

urgent medical intensive care treatment in Australia on Saturday

Already the Opposition leader, Mannaseh Sogavare has lashed out saying under the immunity clause of the RAMSI facilitation act, the Samoan officer can not be prosecuted under Solomon Islands laws.

The accident has come at a bad time, as the National Parliament will be reviewing the Facilitation Act that paved the way for the entry of the Mission.