Malaita Ma'asina Forum President Charles Dausabea. Photo: SIBC.

Malaita Ma’asina Forum President Charles Dausabea. Photo: SIBC.

Pressure group the Malaita Ma’asina Forum has described the Central Bank’s reply on the investment of 31 gold bars in Hong Kong as “holding no water”.

Local media reports the Central Bank has invested 31 pieces of gold bars in Hong Kong to be closure to buyers.

In defence of its decision to keep the gold bars in Hong Kong, the Central Bank said the cost of bringing the gold from Hong Kong to Solomon Islands would be very high in terms of transportation costs and the substantial security cost involved in moving the gold from Hong Kong to Honiara.

But responding to the bank’s reply, MMF President Charles Dausabea told a media conference yesterday that the bank has to explain this thoroughly.

“When they replied and talk about transport costs, can the Central Bank tell us how much it has spent for transporting the gold to Hong Kong? The freight it is talking about, can the bank tell us? And for what purpose does it undertake such a huge freight to put the gold in Hong Kong? Only Hong Kong will benefit from the gold, despite paying commission to the country. So can the Central bank come out and tell us how much does it cost for sending the gold to Hong Kong while it’s good they’ve admitted there are 31 pieces of gold bar being invested. If that is the case then something is really wrong.”

The Malaita Masina Forum also called on the Central Bank to explain why it has decided not to strengthen the country’s currency by investing the 31 gold bars in Honiara.

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