Solomons Opposition Leader Rebuffs Call To Resign

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Derek Sikua faces criticism after naming PM in court move

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, Oct. 31, 2012) – Solomon Islands Opposition leader Dr. Derek Sikua has described the call by a former Guadalcanal MP for him to step down as "unconstitutional and politically motivated."

In a statement yesterday, Dr. Sikua said Walton Naeson’s call was merely a politically motivated attempt to remove him for exposing the dubious dealings of Prime Minister Gordon Darcy Lilo.

"The call by Mr. Naeson for my resignation was simply pathetic because only the Members of the Opposition Group have the constitutional mandate to remove me as their leader and nobody else including the Prime Minister whose selfish interest Mr. Naezon seems to be advocating," he said.

He claimed that it was the Prime Minister who wanted him removed from the office because of the constant exposure.

"I am aware that the Prime Minister wants me removed from the position of Opposition Leader for my persistent exposure of his corrupt dealings and is using certain narrow-minded individuals to achieve this evil plot.

"But let me tell them that I will not stop from carrying out my constitutional mandate in ensuring government policies and daily decisions are in the best interest of the nation."

Dr. Sikua said the suggestion by Mr. Naezon that statements issued by the office of the leader of opposition were either unendorsed by the leader or that the leader had been used to expose the PM, was misleading.

"As a matter of fact, all statements issued by my office were endorsed by me and were based on well researched information, unlike the statements issued by the Prime Minister’s Office and I strongly urge Mr. Naeson not to allow himself to be used by politicians who merely care about enriching themselves at the expense of the nation," he said.

The Opposition leader explained that his absence from Parliament last Friday was in protest of the Speaker’s decision.

"My absence was due to the Speaker of Parliament’s unreasonable interference with my constitutional right to move the Motion of No-Confidence in the Prime Minister at a time I deem appropriate.

"My absence was in direct protest to the decision by the Speaker of Parliament in putting down the Motion of No-Confidence on the Order Paper for last Friday despite informing him that I wanted the motion removed from the order paper for that day and him having informed me that I had the sole discretion to decide when my motion should be placed on the order paper."

Dr. Sikua said he submitted a claim to the High Court yesterday for a judicial review of the Speaker’s decision.

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