7 Jun 2007

TI Solomon Islands positive about proposed meeting with prime minister

7:00 pm on 7 June 2007

A spokesperson for Transparency Solomon Islands says civil society groups and the prime minister should approach any meeting between the two sides with an open mind.

Joses Tuhanuku was speaking after the P.M., Manasseh Sogavare, issued an invitation to civil society groups to discuss issues with him directly.

The groups are opposed to plans to appoint an Australianl lawyer, Julian Moti, as the Attorney-General and want the government to rescind the appointment of the new Police Commissioner, Jahir Khan of Fiji.

Mr Tuhanuku says both sides should hold a meeting without preconditions and see if something can be achieved.

"The prime minister is quite adamant that nothing will force him to change his mind and I would say that the position of the civil society groups remains the same. Having said that, I think it's a good thing for the civil society groups to meet the prime minister if he's prepared to meet us to discuss the issue."

Mr Tuhanuku says civil society groups are meeting shortly to decide whether to accept the invitation.