Solomons' ombudsman expecting more complaints under new law

9:01 am on 1 August 2017

The Solomon Islands' ombudsman Fred Fakari says he is expecting to receive more complaints from the public after a new law passed last week made provisions for verbal complaints to be accepted by his office.

The Solomon Islands flag

The Solomon Islands flag Photo: RNZI

The Ombudsman Act 2017 also created a separate budgetary allocation for the ombudsman providing more autonomy for its oversight role.

The independence of the ombudsman had been criticised in the past as it is funded through the prime minister's office.

Mr Fakari also said that for the first time under the new Act people with poor literacy skills and those living in remote parts of the country will be able to register their complaints verbally.

"In the past we only expect people to write to us and this has been the weakness of every legislation that tries to protect our people. Because not everyone knows how to write and also often people don't have an interest in lengthy processes. So we give license to these bad people to continue with what they do."