5 Jan 2015

Solomon Islands PM pushed on anti-corruption commitment

3:04 pm on 5 January 2015

An anti-corruption watchdog in Solomon Islands is urging the country's new Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, to demonstrate his commitment to tackling corruption by establishing an independent body.

Transparency Solomon Islands' comments follows the controversial appointment of Bodo Dettke, who has strong links to the logging industry, as forestry minister.

Bodo Dettke

Bodo Dettke Photo: RNZI Koroi Hawkins

The group is backing earlier calls by the Office of the Leadership Code Commission for Mr Dettke to stand down from his portfolio.

TSI's executive officer, Daniel Fenua, says Bodo Dettke's appointment is a conflict of interest and not a good start for the Government.

"We thought at the very start this is a time for a change, given that the Prime Minister, himself, was a very strong advocate against corruption and he had been very vocal."

Daniel Fenua says the country needs an independent commission in order to effectively tackle corruption.