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Solomon Islands

Solomons Gov reacts to calls to defund Pacific Games

The Solomon Islands government has slammed calls by the country’s opposition leader Matthew Wale, for donors to disrupt next year’s Pacific Games.

The nation is set to host its first ever Pacific Games, with a lot of development taking place on the island. China, Australia and the United States are financing games venues.

In an interview with The Strategist, Mr Wale said Australia and other donors could flex their muscles and make Prime Minister Manasseh Sogovare think twice about the China deal.

He said the upcoming Pacific Games meant a lot to the current government and due pressure on that would make the prime minister think twice.

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In a response to the claims made by Mr Wale, the Solomon Islands government issued a statement and said Mr Wale had gone overboard.

“The Leader of the Opposition went to the extent of suggesting to Australia and USA to influence other Pacific Countries not to participate in the 2023 Pacific Games,” said the statement.

“This is a one-man crusade for power. Unfortunately, he has cunningly used our innocent people to execute this evil plan of his.”

The government even accused Mr Wale of planning the November riots in order to seize power.

“Wale further claimed that ministers in the government are not happy with the security pact with Peoples’ Republic of China and claimed that this will be the cause of the downfall of the government,” the statement said.

pacific games
The Pacific Games in Samoa in 2019. Picture: Twitter

The statement said it was made clear that the security pact is to, amongst other things, protect and safeguard peace-loving Solomon Islanders and their properties.

“Government already had a fruitful meeting with a USA high level delegation and the meeting sets the basis for another meeting in September.

On Monday the Government also had a meeting with a high level delegation who flew in from Tokyo,” said the statement.

“We have escalated our engagement with our bilateral partners and they have responded, all with the aim of developing our beloved country.

Sadly, Wale is only interested in being the Prime Minister and not development.”

Mr Wale has been asked to respond to the claims made by the government.

 

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