A portrait of Alvaro de Mendana. Photo credit: Discover History.

A portrait of Alvaro de Mendana. Photo credit: Discover History.

A new monument of Alvaro de Mendana, the Spanish explorer who first discovered and named Solomon Islands was inaugurated yesterday in Honiara by Spain’s Ambassador to Solomon Islands, His Excellency Enrique Viguera.

The Bust was donated by the Government of Spain to the people of Solomon Islands.

Unveiling the monument at the National Art Gallery grounds yesterday Spanish Ambassador Enrique Viguera said he was deeply moved because this marks the end of a dream, being cherished when presenting his credentials in Solomon Islands two years ago.

“I’m deeply moved really because this is the end of my dream, a dream that I cherish when I present the credentials only two years ago in the Solomon Islands and I discovered that there were so many people called Alvaro and they didn’t know why, and I discovered that the main street is called Mendana and we have a hotel called Mendana, and I said to myself for the same reason we’ve done in Vanuatu not too long ago to inaugurate a monument for that navigator named Quiros, who discovered four centuries ago Vanuatu, we have to do the same thing in the Solomon Islands.”

He adds, with the monument, Spain, the Solomon Islands and Europe have made an important step forward.

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