22 Oct 2015

Solomons PM to adjourn parliament after mass exodus

3:40 pm on 22 October 2015

A spokesperson for the Solomon Islands Prime Minister's office says Manasseh Sogavare will adjourn parliament until next week while he deals with a political upheaval facing him.

PM Sogavare and his Deputy Douglas Ete listen to speeches at GBR

PM Sogavare (right) and his Deputy Douglas Ete Photo: RNZI Courtesy of SIG

Seven government ministers officially resigned late yesterday afternoon, citing problems with the PMs leadership style.

The resigned ministers belong to the United Democratic Party and Kandere Party - the major coalition partners in the government.

They are the Deputy Prime Minister Douglas Ete, Dr Derek Sikua, Ishmael Avui, Bodo Dettke, Commins Mewa, Augustine Auga and Andrew Manepora'a.

Deli Oso, a spokesperson for the prime minister, says reports that six government backbenchers have also resigned are incorrect.

Ms Oso says Mr Sogavare has not released an official statement on the resignations but is likely to adjourn parliament today.

"The prime minister is expected to adjourn parliament until next week just to address the political upheaval that is here before him."

A spokesman for the group that deserted the prime minister said they will be calling on Mr Sogavare to step down or face a no confidence vote.

Ms Oso says the government ministers who have resigned will be replaced as soon as possible and Mr Sogavare is not worried about a motion of no confidence.

"He is not at all concerned because there is nothing there, that he thinks he is a clean man and there is nothing against him that they should have taken against him. At the moment he is yet to release a statement on the resignation of his ministers but he is expected to make some appointments as soon as possible."

Meanwhile, the Parliamentary Opposition Group has denied claims six of their MPs have joined the Manasseh Sogavare led Democratic Coalition for Change government.

Ministers who have resigned

Minister of Education and Human Resources Dr Derek Sikua

Deputy Prime Minister Douglas Ete

Minister of Culture and Tourism Bodo Dettke

Minister of Agriculture and Livestock Augustine Auga

Minister of Lands, Housing and Survey Andrew Manepora'a

Minister of Police, National Security and Correctional Service Commins Mewa

Minister of Justice and Legal Affairs Ishmael Avui.