5 Jul 2005

Claims that Truth Commission would not work in Solomon Islands

4:00 pm on 5 July 2005

A representative of the Solomon Islands National Peace Council says a Truth and Reconciliation Commission won't work in the Solomons.

Civil society in Solomon Islands has long promoted such a body as part of the rehabilitation process and now the Pacific Islands Forum agrees.

Their Eminent Persons Group's assessment of the progress of the Regional Assistance Mission has recommended a commission, but Danny Philip from the Peace Council says it won't work.

He says the Solomon Islands is very different from places like Fiji which is also planning to set up such a body.

"People are much more heterogenous, here in this country seven different dialects, a myriad of variations in cultural norms and values, where there is no particular warlord if you like, or particular group of chieftainship that has a complete control over a big hunk of Solomons population - even in Papua New Guinea or Vanuatu...this cannot work."

Danny Philip says it would also undermine the National Peace Council's work.