HONIARA PEACE ACCORD

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Parties to the crisis; the people of Guadalcanal and Malaita provinces, representatives of the other provinces, and those of the national government of Solomon Islands, Members of the National Parliament here present to resolve the crisis occasioned by the demands of the people of Guadalcanal. At this meeting on Monday June 28 at the Forum Fisheries Agency Conference Centre, Kola'a Ridge, Honiara, Solomon Islands presided over by the Commonwealth Special Envoy Major General Sitiveni L. Rabuka. We the participants hereby:

1). Resolve to eschew violence as a means of resolving the crisis and cooperate with the Commonwealth Special Envoy in his efforts to find a lasting solution.

2). Observe that since 1978 the issues which repeatedly appeared in the demands of Guadalcanal and which has been at the root of the current crisis are:

(i) Demand for a return of alienate lands belonging to the people of Guadalcanal in the process of developing Honiara as the National Capital and those alleged to have been acquired illegally by migrating Malaitans who form the largest group of workers employed by the government and private sectors in Honiara.

(ii) Demand for Compensation for the murders of Guadalcanal people by individual Malaitans and a desire to put an end to this.

(iii) The demand that a state government be established in Guadalcanal and other provinces in order to achieve in Guadalcanal; control over sale and use of land; control over distribution of wealth derived from Guadalcanal province and control over migration of people form other provinces to Guadalcanal.

(iv) Failure of successive Governments to respond satisfactorily to these demands led to the formation of a militant Guadalcanal group to press these demands by harassing Malaitans living and working in the National Capital, Honiara and the surroundings. This has in recent times led to the enforced return of Malaitans; some of whom have spent all their lives in Guadalcanal, to their territory and has involved the loss of property and tremendous amount of discomfort.

(3) Recognize that the government of Prime Minister Bartholomew Ulufa'alu has attempted to deal with the crisis as evident by the activities of The Task Force on Guadalcanal Demands March 1999 and the Guadalcanal Peace Process Committee June 1999 and the establishment of a Government negotiating team to negotiate the Guadalcanal demands with the Guadalcanal people. The latter effort led to the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Solomon Islands Government and the Guadalcanal Provincial Government on June13 1999.

(4) Recognize that the above attempts could have constituted the starting point for a lasting solution. The implementation of aspects of the memorandum of understanding in particular the payment of 2.5 million into a Reconciliation Trust Account to be held by the Guadalcanal province in recognition of the social costs being borne by the indigenous people of Guadalcanal as a result of the capital being located in Honiara is a step in the right direction. It is however observed that this action has not been sufficiently well communicated to all sections of the Guadalcanal community in particular the militants. Effective steps to ensure that this is done should be taken immediately. Furthermore the provincial government of Guadalcanal should as a matter of urgency take action to honour its commitments as stated in para. 6 page 2 of the Memorandum of Understanding and the government does same with regards to para. 7 page 2 with particular reference to the police.

It is suggested that further action to be taken to alleviate the handicap suffered by the Guadalcanal people as a result of the capital being located in the territory are:

(a) A Review of the Lands and Titles Act to take account of the aspects of the diverse cultures in particular the land tenure system of all the provinces in such a way as to adequately compensate original land owners when Central Government or industrial projects are located in their territory. A Committee comprising representatives of all the provinces should established immediately and its recommendation should take account of the special needs of Guadalcanal in view of the fact that Honiara is located in the Province. The Committee should submit its report within a year and its recommendations implemented immediately.

(b) Investigation to be conducted into land alleged to have been illegally acquired by from the original owners of Guadalcanal with a view to returning the land to the original owners or pay adequate compensation and if applicable adequate compensation to the developers of the land in question. Those disposed of their land should make initial steps to complain to the Office of the appropriate authorities.

(c) A policy to be put in place within a period of time to discourage the practice of squatting particularly in Guadalcanal. Strong penalties to be instituted against offenders as a form of deterrent.

(d) All the above (a-c) should however be without prejudice to the Freedom of Movement of bonafide Citizens of Solomon Islands and to their constitutional rights to own properties in any part of the country subject to compliance to the law as applied to the particular territory of domicile.

(e) In order to check the current trend of rural-urban migration and in particular the migration to Honiara, Government agrees to adopt a policy of even development of all the constituent provinces of Solomon Islands. Particular emphasis should be placed on developing infrastructures in the other provinces in Particular Malaita province so as to attract industrial development.

5) The demand for State Government System of administration arose out of frustration over the failure of successive governments to address issues relating to the location of the National Capital in Honiara. It is also recognized that this is a constitutional issue of fundamental importance with implications on how the entire country is governed. It is noted that a committee has been set up to review the Provincial Government System. The Committee should endeavour to conclude its work within six months following which necessary constitutional amendments could be introduced in Parliament.

(6) Following the acceptance of the need for all sides to compromise and sacrifice in the search for peace in the country, it is hereby resolved that

(i) All organisations formed for the purpose of pushing demands of the people of Guadalcanal through the use of force be dissolved with immediate effect. All members of the group should return home and surrender their weapons at agreed points established by the peace envoy. In the case of those who committed particular offences the process of law will be allowed to take its course as there is no constitutional provision for an amnesty.

(ii) The Special Envoy notes the decision of government to agree to a meeting with the militants. Arrangements will be made to effect this within the shortest possible time.

(iii) Normal operations should resume at the industrial sites of CDC/SIPL , the Gold Ridge Mine and other industrial establishments bearing in the mind their contribution to the national economy.

(7) Victims of the unrest of the recent past who have been forced to relocate in their province should be encouraged and assisted by Government. A mechanism should be established to pay adequate compensation to those who had suffered loss of properties. The Task Force established by Government to resettle displaced Malaitans be adequately funded. Domestic and International assistance to aid rehabilitation and repatriation of displaced persons will be intensified. A Central Government accelerated development programme for Malaita, aided and supported by international organisation and Commonwealth countries should be established immediately to enable displaced Malaitans practice their skill, arrest the wave of rural-urban migration, and to consolidate peace efforts.

(8) In order to promote a sense of national unity and bridge the feeling of alienation by ethnic persons of Guadalcanal from the Central Government, there should be an equal and fair representation of all provinces in the national civil service and the police force with emphasis ion quality. The police in particular should be encouraged to improve its image in Guadalcanal.

(9) Bearing in mind the efforts made in the process of reconciliation and recognizing its importance, there is an urgent need for appropriate measures to be in place to ensure continuity of the reconciliatory process.

Honourable Bartholomew Ulufa'alu, MP Prime Minister

Major General Sitiveni L. Rabuka Commonwealth Special Envoy

Right Honourable Ezekiel Alebua Premier Guadalcanal Province

Honourable David Oeta Premier of Malaita Province

WITNESSED BY:

Solomon Sunaone Mamaloni, MP Leader of the Opposition

Honourable Tommy Chan, MP Leader of the Independent Group

Honourable Mark Kemakeza Premier, Central Islands Province

Honourable Joini Tutua Deputy Premier, Choiseul Province

Dated this 28th day of June in the year 1999

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