15 Oct 2007

TI Solomons labels Forum boycott irresponsible

4:11 pm on 15 October 2007

Transparency International Solomon Islands says the government's decision to boycott tomorrow's Pacific Island Forum leaders' summit in Tonga is irresponsible.

The Solomons prime minister, Manasseh Sogavare, says his entire government has decided not to take part in the summit proper because it doesn't want controversy over the Australian-led Regional Assistance Mission, or RAMSI, to overshadow other important matters on the agenda.

He's also accused Canberra of running a misleading and insulting media campaign against his government.

The Executive Officer of Transparency Solomon Islands, Joses Tuhanuku, says the boycott is unwise.

"The action of the Prime Minister is both irresponsible and immature. There may be some disagreement between him and some leaders but I think it would have been better for him to go and present his position to the leaders of the region."

The Executive Officer of Transparency Solomon Islands, Joses Tuhanuku.

Mr Sogavare is currently in Taiwan and unavailable for comment.

Solomon Islands is sending its foreign minister and its planning minister to the post-forum dialogue which starts on Wednesday.