29 Aug 2012

Solomon Islands' new woman MP inaccessible to overseas media

4:20 am on 29 August 2012

A former MP and the husband of Solomon Islands' new woman parliamentarian Vika Lusibaea says he will not allow his wife to speak to overseas media.

Jimmy Lusibaea lost his North Malaita seat after being jailed for an unlawful wounding conviction but in the recent by-election Mrs Lusibaea won a substantial victory over nine male rivals.

Annell Husband reports.

"Mrs Lusibaea's election is only the second success for a woman in the country's 34-year parliamentary history and makes her the current legislature's sole woman representative. Her victory has been lauded by the country's women leaders as proof women can successfully enter parliament if they have enough support from men. In a text, Mr Lusibaea told Radio New Zealand International he didn't trust the station or its Australian counterpart and he would not allow his wife to be interviewed. Mr Lusibaea has told the Solomon Star newspaper his wife will continue with the same programme his team was establishing to help North Malaitans. But a prominent women's leader Dr Alice Pollard says she understands Mrs Lusibaea's priorities are improving her people's education and livelihood."