13 May 2020

Solomons govt accused of abusing emergency powers

4:53 pm on 13 May 2020

The Solomon Islands government has been accused of using its emergency powers to attack its opponents.

Honiara port, ships, boats, houses, parliament - Solomon Islands

Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Koroi Hawkins

The premier of Malaita, Daniel Suidani, has called for an emergency sitting of parliament to review the powers.

Mr Suidani wrote an open letter to all national and provincial leaders on Monday, which has also been seen by RNZ Pacific.

He said recent government threats to suspend him and his administration for questioning the national Covid-19 response is a politicisation of the state of emergency.

He said the government was being selective in its application of the powers, which he said were being used to harass and oppress opponents.

"The action I seek is your co-operation on is a joint call for the urgent convening of Parliament to debate safeguards around the Emergency Powers Act and Emergency Powers (Covid-19) Regulations 2020," Mr Suidani wrote.

The government said its has resolved its differences with the premier since the letter was published.

The premier of Malaita Province Daniel Suidani.

The premier of Malaita Province Daniel Suidani. Photo: Daniel Suidani/ Official Facebook