Solomons PM Directs Arts Festival Officials To Address Payment Delays

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‘Cooperation, understanding’ urged as opening date nears

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, June 13, 2012) – The Prime Minister Hon. Gordon Darcy Lilo has reminded Festival of Pacific Arts officials in the Solomon Islands that paying contractors, supplies, and vendors in time remains both a challenge and a management issue in any operation of this scale, and it also needs cooperation and understanding on both sides.

The Prime Minister urged Festival officials to work out how best to address the issue, given the length of time it can take to address payments through the government system which can be slow at times.

In raising some of the issues and pressures the Festival organizers are going to increasingly face in the coming 20 days, Prime Minister Lilo also called on the country not lose sight of the vision underpinning our decision to host the 11th Festival of Pacific Arts.

The Prime Minister said the upcoming Festival would be giving Solomon Islands the opportunity, right on their own shores, to showcase and display the diversities of their own cultural heritage.

At the same time the, Prime Minister said the Festival would also give our people the opportunity to share the experience and diversities of Pacific culture with their Pacific within the fourteen days event.

The Prime Minister made the statements when he met last Saturday with Culture and Tourism Minister Hon Sam Manetoali, Permanent Secretary, John Wasi, Under Secretary Moses Tepai, Chairlady Doreen Kuper, Festival Director Robert Au and two committee chairs.

Stella Lucas who is Chairlady for the Accommodation and Catering Committee and Solomon Islands Contingent Director Henry Isa also attended the meeting.

Prime Minister Lilo is expected to visit the main Festival village during the course of this week and he is scheduled to meet all Festival officials at the Red House on Saturday before leaving on an overseas trip on Sunday.

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