19 Aug 2014

Overreaction claimed amid Solomons mine woes

7:30 am on 19 August 2014

The Solomon Islands government says local people claim the Gold Ridge mine company has overreacted in moving foreign workers for security reasons.

The mine has not been operating since the beginning of April when flooding put it out of action, and more than 400 workers have just been made redundant.

Gold Ridge also removed all its foreign workers, saying there have been a number of recent serious security incidents which have been growing in frequency and severity.

The special secretary to the Prime Minister, Dr Philip Tagini, says he understands the company wanting to take the best approach, but the government believes the situation is under control.

"And the locals are telling us, that's just overreaction, that didn't need to happen. But of course, the report we're getting from the company is that they are under extreme threat. I think these things need to be put in proper balance."

Dr Philip Tagani says the government is doing all it can and is sending in police response teams to take over policing duties.