9 Feb 2005

Solomons parliament elects deputy speaker - no confidence vote still due

2:50 pm on 9 February 2005

The Solomon Islands National Parliament is yet to hold a vote of no confidence in the administration of Sir Allen Kemakeza.

It is now expected that the vote will go ahead this afternoon.

Sir Allen has said he is confident of retaining power, while the Opposition MP bringing the motion, former Prime Minister, Bartholomew Ulufa'alu, says it could go either way.

Meanwhile Patteson Oti has been elected as the new Deputy Speaker, winning the vote 31 to 14.

Mr Oti replaces Fred Fono who last week joined the Kemakeza government as Minister for Planning.

Mr Oti, who resigned as leader of the Opposition two years ago before joining the Government when offered a Cabinet post, was dumped last week after criticising the Regional Assistance Mission.