26 Jul 2008

Solomon Islands appoints ombudsman after two-year delay

8:39 am on 26 July 2008

Solomon Islands has appointed an ombudsman after the post was left vacant for nearly two years because of legal complications.

Joe Poraiwai has been sworn into office by the Governor General Sir Nathaniel Waena at Government House.

Mr Poraiwai was recommended for the position in 2006 by a committee comprising the Speaker of Parliament, the Chief Justice and the Chairman of the Public Service Commission.

But the then Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare objected on the grounds that the committee's decision was biased.

This resulted in the case being taken to court, and the Court of Appeal has finally given its verdict upholding the decision of the Committee.

The appointment of Mr Poraiwai will go some way to solving more than 100 complaints lodged to the office for investigations by the Ombudsman's Commission.