28 Oct 2002

Signs some Solomon Islanders have a cargo cult mentality

4:50 pm on 28 October 2002

The Governor of the Central Bank in Solomon Islands, Rick Hou, says many people there seem to have been converted to a cargo cult mentality.

He was speaking out about a controversial scheme promising million dollar payouts for an investment of a few hundred dollars.

Mr Hou has called for a public debate about the Family Charitable Fund which encourages people to invest around 250 Solomon Islands dollars with the promise of a return of more than a million dollars, within months.

Mr Hou says the people running the scheme are giving their members little information and he says they should produce the evidence to prove that the fund is genuine.

"We have been trying to inform and educate the public about this, unfortunately there are many people in our community here who have probably been converted to a cargo cult kind of mentality to the extent that common sense no longer is any sense to anyone,...common sense is already you know, nonsense."

Rick Hou.

The people running the Fund have made various claims about the source of the money for the payouts, including the Central Bank and aid donors.

Assistant police commissioner Wilfred Akao meanwhile says they are investigating whether the scheme complies with the Central Banking Act, but he says so far no investors have laid a complaint.