Sunday, August 30, 2009


Dear Readers,

I want to draw your attention to the draft Federal Constitution which was released not long ago. The draft Federal Constitution was reviewed by the Constitutional Congress (CC) and the Eminent Persons Advisory Council (EPAC) of the Constitutional Reform Program. For more information regarding the work done by the Constitutional Reform Unit (CRU) who administers the work done towards the new Federal Constitution, check the website: Hence, you will see the draft Federal Constitution on that website.

You might have your own views on what the Federal system is and whether it is the ‘right’ part for us to undertake. However, I believe if we are to adopt the Federal system, Solomon Islands will not be the same as it is since independence. For instance, the nine (9) provinces will become nine (9) separate states with their own constitutions unless the provinces agree to merge as one big state as provided for under section 151 (4). It will need human resources to fill the positions in those respective states to be and even a change of mindset to the idea of state and nationhood. For instance, according to the Former Prime Minister of Solomon Islands, Solomon S Mamaloni, he decribed the Solomon's as ' a nation conceived but never born' ( Mamaloni, 1992: 14). In addition, he stated, "Solomon Islands....has never been a nation and will never be a nation and will never become one" ( Mamaloni, 1992: 10). These sentiments were echoed during the 10th Independence aniversary of Solomon ISlands. It was ten years after what Mamaloni asserted that we had experience the ethnic tension and now ten years after the ethnic tension moves are now progressing towards Federalism as the alternative to the existing system we have enjoyed for the last three decades. The question is, will this Federal system create the idea of nationhood and make Solomon Islands a nation that Mamaloni seem pessimistic about? However, the former Governor General, George Lepping stated in support of the new Constitution that,'it will help prevent [future] ethnic tensions' (Solomon Times online, 17th August 2009). This suggestion might be presumptous bearing in mind what Mamaloni had professed regarding the framentation and the ethnic divide in the Solomon Islands.

I hope by reading the draft Federal Constitution, this will give us an insight of what the federal system will be like for us. Hence, this will provide the bases to which we can critique the content of it and understand what the likely implications will be for the Federal government and offcourse the individuals states that make the sovereign nation of Solomon Islands. I understand that the draft Federal Constitution need public feedback before the second draft can be released but i personally think it needs to be scrutinise throughly by the public before pursue the Federal system.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this concern. Although most of us agree that this draft constitution's implementation would not be enacted without major hiccups, it is also imperative to remember that this is what the majority of Solomon Islanders want.