Solomon Islanders March In Protest Of Easter Killing Of Chinese Couple

Honiara Mayor speaks out in support of death penalty for serious crimes

By Teddy Kafo

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, April 24, 2017) – West Honiara came to a standstill on Sunday afternoon after more than a thousand people took part in a solemn procession to condemn and denounce the barbaric killing of the Chinese couple murdered over the Easter weekend.

The march kicked off from the Art Gallery to Town-ground LGZ building where the murder took place.

The march was organized by Forum Solomon Islands International (FSII), the Chinese Association in Solomon Islands and other private business houses.

Demonstrators carried a large banner denouncing the ‘barbaric killing’ act.

A photo of the smiling deceased couple was carried at the front to lead the procession.

Late Jimmy Kwan and Joy Kwan were very successful in their business venture in the country and lived all their lives here and contributed a lot to the retail business sector.

President of FSII Benjamin Afuga in his remarks said the march marked a historic occasion.

“Today marks that we care for humanity.

“We want a society free from barbaric killings.

“As concern citizens, we condemn this brutal murder in the strongest manner,” Mr Afuga said.

The FSII chief then shared condolence messages from the organisation to the children who are currently studying in Canada, immediate family members of the deceased couple and the more than 400 Chinese men and women who attended the march.

Speaking on behalf of the government, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs, George Palua also expressed condolences message to the family members of the murdered couple.

“On behalf of the Deputy Prime Minister and the Solomon Islands Government, I offer sincere condolences to the bereaving family members and Chinese colleagues of the deceased couple.

“We must show solidarity with the Chinese community and condemn such killing.”

“The government will ensure that investigations will bring those responsible to face justice,” Mr Palua said.

Also speaking during the tribute ceremony in front of the LGZ building was City Mayor Andrew Mua who highlighted the importance of the gathering.

“Today we as citizens of Honiara City come together with a common purpose - condemn what has happened and also reflect on past barbaric killing incidents.

“We stand at this place regardless of our culture or origin; we are one - the Hapi Isles of Solomon Islands,” the City Mayor Mua said.

[PIR editor’s note: On April 24, 2017 Solomon Star reported that ‘Honiara City Council Mayor Andrew Mua says he is in full support on the call to resurrect capital punishment to people who commits brutal murder. … The City Mayor during yesterday’s tribute ceremony and condemnation of barbaric killing of the Chinese couple calls on government to impose tougher laws to deter further killings of the same nature in the near future.’]

The march ended with the laying of floral wreaths by Chinese Association members, the FSII executive, formal guests and followed by friends and the public.

Many shed tears while placing their wreaths in front of the building.

All those who have attended have been acknowledged for taking time out to be part of the event.

Most Chinese shops were close for the day to be part of the occasion.

Solomon Star
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Comments

As a former resident of Honiara and a person who did business with many members of the Chinese community I am deeply saddened by these events. The Chinese community has contributed much to Honiara!

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