Posted by: nativeiowan | February 7, 2011

can you say “power struggle”?

THE GOVERNOR General Sir Frank Kabui is reportedly being pressured by the Opposition to call Parliament immediately after deputy Opposition leader Matthew Wale filed yet another letter to the Government House over the weekend.

Private Secretary to Governor General Nigel Maezama confirmed a letter signed by Mr Wale was lodged to the Governor General on Saturday.
The Solomon Star understands this was the second notice the Opposition had filed to the Governor General after they filed a petition January 25, which was signed by 25 members.

Mr Wale yesterday confirmed lodging a letter to the Government House but he declined to reveal the details of the letter stating that it would be unethical because the Governor General had not responded to his letter yet.

But the Solomon Star understands that the letter was to advise the Governor General to call Parliament immediately after former Minister of Mines and Energy Mark Kemakeza and Housing Minister Martin Sophage resigned from the Government again.

Mr Kemakeza and Mr Sophage earlier resigned from the Government and joined the Opposition.

They recently took their oath and moved back to the Government and now they are back with the Opposition after they resigned last Friday.

Mr Maezama confirmed receiving their resignation letters on Friday last week.

This brings the political number game to 26-22 in favour of the Opposition.

The Solomon Star asked to interview the Governor General but Mr Maezama said the Governor General would not be speaking to the media on the matter.

“This is a political issue the politicians have to resolve themselves and they cannot drag the Governor General into the matter. Like we mentioned earlier, only the Prime Minister has the power to call parliament end of story,” he said.

However, an Opposition spokesman told the Solomon Star that the best option now was for Governor General Sir Frank Kabui to call on the Prime Minister to prove his numbers before Parliament sits to pass the budget.

“Like it or not if the Government don’t have the majority then the Opposition are likely to defeat the budget so the Prime Minister has to prove his numbers now to avoid a constitutional crisis,” he said.

Last week Tuesday, the Opposition also filed a motion of no confidence to Speaker of Parliament Sir Allan Kemakeza.

The Oppositions notice was based on the Danny Philip case which outlined that a no confidence vote under section 34 of the constitution is a right of an MP and cannot be suppressed by the standing orders.

Sir Allan recently told the Solomon Star that there were only two options in dealing with the notice and they were (1) for the speaker to call Parliament based on section 34 (2) of the Constitution and (2) to take the matter to court to clarify section 34 (2) whether the speaker has the power to call Parliament.

The matter had been referred to the Attorney General in which he advised that the speaker had no power to convene Parliament.

Sir Allan also re-confirmed this to the Solomon Star yesterday.


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