NCRA’s flagship political reform bill – the Political Parties Integrity Bill has been passed of its second reading, after 25 MPs voted in favor of the Bill.
The Bill will provide for ‘the registration, administration and development of political parties to promote integrity in their operations.’
It will also make ‘consequentially amendments to the National Parliament Electoral Act’.
Winding up the Bill in Parliament this evening, Prime Minister Gordon Darcy Lilo responded to concerns about the Bill’s purpose, saying it is not an anti-defection bill.
“But it is not about anti-defection, no. This side of the House the government side Sir we are totally convicted that this Bill will work towards formatting the development of political parties in this country. We have now reach a stage in our development that there has to be a legislative mechanism that provides for registration, disqualification and setting up standards and requirements for the development of political parties in Solomon Islands Sir, and in that way we enable this political parties culture to be developed so that, you know, we can bring about a better political discourse to our Solomon Islands.”
The Prime Minister adds the Bill’s purpose will also allow political parties visions and philosophies to be presented to people.
“Where we can sell to our people that this political party has the best vision philosophy in governing our country. That’s what our people wants, I mean we have always been saying this in this House Sir that we need to have our voters, our citizens to vote for leaders that stand for good visions, good policies that will work to bring about better development in the standard of living of our people in the country Sir, that’s what this Bill is all about. So I don’t want us to mistake this Bill with anti-defection.”
Parliament will continue deliberations on the Political Parties Integrity Bill in House Committee stage when it resumes tomorrow.
SIBC News understands 25 MP’s voted in favor of the Bill, 6 voted against it and 18 MPs were absent during the vote.