The Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet has described the front page news articles in today’s papers as “false and misleading.”
In a media statement today the OPMC says both the Island Sun and Solomon Star newspaper reported that Cabinet had approved 5-million to buy relief supplies for the victims of cyclone Raquel which left a costly trail of destruction in 33 constituencies.
It describes the story angle as false and misleading, saying contrary to what the papers reported, the cabinet last Thursday approved a total sum of $3.3 million for relief supplies for the victims of cyclone Raquel.
The statement adds, the money will be used to buy rice for people who are affected by the cyclone, adding this will be the first line of support for people whose food gardens were destroyed and cannot wait for the completion of the site assessment being undertaken by the National Disaster Management Office.
It says it would be grossly inhumane for the government to wait for the completion of NDMO’s assessments of the impact of the cyclone on the 33 affected constituencies when food gardens were totally destroyed by the bad weather.
Meanwhile the statement from the Office of the Prime Minister andCabinet explained, the reason behind the Cabinet’s decision to channel the assistance through Members of Parliament is that they are the very ones that people first turn to in times of trouble and need.
It says only those far detached from the realities of life in SolomonIslands will question why Cabinet decided to channel this first line of disaster relief assistance through members of parliament.
The statement adds government disaster relief assistance through NDMO will be given after the completion of assessments in the affected Constituencies.
Therefore the Prime Minister and Cabinet Office call on theOpposition Leader to put all his facts on issues of national interest right before barking in the media.
It also cautioned the Opposition Leader against practicing insensitivity when discussing issues that touch the lives of our people.