15 Apr 2010

Solomons abandons plan to add 17 constituencies

4:17 pm on 15 April 2010

The Solomon Islands parliament has rejected a report which proposed the addition of 17 new constituencies.

The Solomon Times reports the majority of MPs supported a motion to reject the 2009 Constituency Boundaries Commission Report.

In a surprise move, the Planning Minister, Steve Abana, moved a motion to reject the report, which the Speaker of Parliament, Sir Peter Kenilorea, allowed to be debated without notice.

The Speaker said the issue was a matter of national urgency.

But the Environment Minister, Gordon Darcy Lilo, said due process should have been respected, and it was unfortunate the report did not go through the committee stage so it could have been improved.

Many MPs had objected to the new constituencies, citing an acute shortage in government finances.