SOLOMONS POLICE URGE PEACEFUL ELECTIONS

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‘Foolish behavior’ could set country back

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Times, July 12, 2010) - The Minister of Police and National Security, James Tora, has appealed to Solomon Islanders to "support electoral officials and the Police in the various activities prior to and including the time of the national general election."

Minister Tora said that there has been, in past national elections, good cooperation and behavior which helped the electoral officials and Police to maintain order. But the Minister acknowledges that all it takes is "foolish behavior by a few to ruin the overall image of the country."

[PIR editor’s note: National elections in the Solomon Islands are scheduled for August 4.]

He says the fact that the presence of foreign observers, particularly foreign media representatives, during the event is almost guaranteed, it is very important that candidates and their supporters respect these overseas friends and be mindful of the images they portray.

The Minister appeals to candidates to talk about their visions for the nation and not on personalities which often leads to unnecessary confrontations.

Minister Tora also acknowledges the assistance and excellent work by RAMSI [Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands] and PPF [Participating Police Force] officers during the last general election and looks forward for the same in the coming national general election.

He also acknowledges and expresses his appreciation on the preparations that have been put in place by the Electoral Commission’s office and that of the Commissioner of Police for the national general elections to date.

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