5 Sep 2009

Warning Solomon Islands political stability bills will not be effective

9:19 am on 5 September 2009

A Solomon Islands political commentator is warning that the Political Parties Integrity Bill and the Enabling Constitutional Amendment Bill will fail to create stability.

Public consultation meetings have been held over the past week in Honiara and more are planned for the provincial centres over the next fortnight.

The bills go before parliament at the end of the month and the head of a working group on them says he'll be surprised if they're not passed because they reflect the changes Solomon Islanders have been requesting.

But Dr John Roughan says until the political climate is such that people hold their representatives to account the bills will not be effective.

"I know they're going to go out to the people and going to try to explain to the people what's going on and trying to reduce the power of the independents but until that context, that climate of people understanding and pushing their representative and pushing their member of parliament the right way it will simply be a law of paper and not too effective."

Dr John Roughan, a researcher with the Solomon Islands Development Trust.