It’s a race between OUR Party, CARE and UP: Sogavare claims OUR Party already has the absolute majority

It’s a race between OUR Party, CARE and UP: Sogavare claims OUR Party already has the absolute majority

By Fredrick Kusu

The current lobbying process among political parties is intensifying to its peak when OUR Party Wing Leader Manasseh Sogavare confidently announced that his coalition has the number to form the next government.

Speaking to SIBC in an exclusive interview, Mr Sogavare confirmed that OUR party has renewed its vows with the Solomon Islands Peoples First Party (SIPFP), a coalition partner of the previous Democratic Coalition Government for Advancement.

SIPFP has 3 elected members and a coalition with OUR Party could bring the total number of members to 18.

Mr Sogavare said the coalition now had the absolute majority needed for the formation of the new government but declined to provide the details of the additional members.

“ We are well advanced. We signed a coalition agreement with SIPFP…we renewed our vows within the family.”

OUR Party Parliamentary Wing Leader Manasseh Sogavare

“I think the numbers we have right now is well beyond the numbers we require to form a government.”

The OUR Party leader said he does not push for leadership and will allow the party process to take place.

He is however confident that the coalition will take on the next government.

Meanwhile, the Coalition for Accountability Reform and Empowerment (CARE) established by the Solomon Islands Democratic Party (SIDP) led by Mathew Wale and the Democratic Alliance Party (DAP) led by Rick Houenipwela now has 13 members. 11 from SIDP, 1 from DAP and 1 from partner, IUMI for Change Party.

SIDP leader Mathew Wale and DAP leader Rick Houenipwela | Photo: SIDP & DAP

The Solomon Islands United Party (UP) has 7 members after an elected member who contested as independent confirmed an affiliation while the Kandere Party and the Solomon Islands Party for Rural Advancement (SIPRA) have 1 member each.

SIBC have received unconfirmed reports from reliable sources within UP that negotiations are underway to form a coalition with CARE and SIPRA.

However, this will depend entirely on agreements based on policy alignments. SIDP Leader Mr Wale and UP leader, Peter Kenilorea Jnr could still have the uttermost authority to decide on any power sharing decisions in order for a coalition to be formed.

UP Parliamentary Wing Leader Peter Kenilorea

Despite the sizable number of members that OUR Party, CARE and UP have now, the 10 independent members could also influence the lobbying process and determine the formation of the next government.

They can still join any of the parties to achieve an absolute majority and form the next government.

A single party rule is too far unless there is a huge number of resignations from members to a single party.

All that is unfolding is unpredictable which is known in Solomon Islands politics.

Below is a graph showing the number of elected members each party have after the 2024 joint election.

Dr Gordon Nanau from the University of the South Pacific said the power in determining the formation of the next government lies among the independent candidates despite the sizable number of seats secured by major parties.

“What we are seeing at the moment is that there is a possibility OUR Party coming back into power or possibility of the previous coalition coming to power. At the moment, those two camps are really obvious as in Solomon Islands politics anything can happen at any time.”

“There is an obvious possibility that those in the previous opposition could also form a coalition,” Dr Nanau said.

The formation of coalitions to the election of a new Prime Minister could take more than a week.

The Governor General will then call for the election of a Prime Minister once two coalitions nominate their candidates for the Prime Minister’s post.



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