28 May 2004

Break silence on corruption, urges Solomons Ombudsman

10:13 am on 28 May 2004

The Solomon Islands Ombudsman, says silence from those who witness corruption, is the biggest obstacle in the fight against corruption in the country.

The country's Ombudsman, John Smith Pitabelama, says, for so long Solomon Islanders, have been silent witnesses to incidents of corruption in government, and their communities.

He says Solomon Islanders have become too accepting of such practices, so those who're corrupt know they can get away with it.

Mr Pitabelama says this culture of silence must be broken, if the country wants to combat corruption.

He says the work of the Ombudsman, and other anti-corruption agencies, rely on complaints to instigate investigations, therefore, over the last twenty years, the statistics, reflect the tolerance levels.

But the Ombudsman acknowledged that since the arrival of the intervention force, more complaints have reached his office, in relation to public servants conduct in office.