The Paramount Chief of Maringe District, Ysabel Province, Dennis Lulei believes, the timing and arrangement of the National Healing and Apology programme this week is not appropriate.
Paramount Chief Lulei made this statement following media reports, ethnic tension victims from Guadalcanal and Malaita Provinces rejects the National Healing and Apology programme this week because it fails to complete underground preparation work which should make the healing week a meaningful one.
“Guadalcanal has bonafide demands so to say these have not been addressed yet by the Government. These should be addressed before we come for a reconciliation. For Malaita, the Premier has said they would wait if Guadalcanal decided that way so I don’t think these two provinces are not willing to come together to reconcile, they are willing, but the timing and how it is arranged is questionable.”
Meanwhile, Chief Lulei explains, in the Ysabel context, his people will not accept any apology passed on through their premier rather, the perpetrators should apologise directly to them.
“I don’t accept for us to take part in the reconciliation, we were at the forefront in peace-making during the tension, we use our resources so for what are we having the reconciliation? Sorry, then what? That genuineness of apology or saying sorry is questionable to me. I don’t accept the Premier of the province to say sorry to Isabel, I would like the real people to say sorry to us but not the premiers.”
Chief Lulei says it is only appropriate that development aid is delivered to the rural areas, a way to fast track rehabilitation effort.