SI citizenship cheaply granted to undeserving candidates: Wale
Solomon Islands citizenship is cheapened by decisions that grant it to candidates that are not worthy of it.
Leader of Opposition Hon Matthew Wale highlighted in Parliament this week during his speech on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2023.
He said those making such decisions have an onerous responsibility in making these resolutions.
Furthermore, Hon Wale said our immigration regulatory framework is out of date and inflexible.
“There is need to bring our legislative framework up to date with modern challenges and needs. The number of classes of immigrant visas are too low and quite restrictive,” he said.
The Opposition Leader said there is need to create a permanent residence class with its own obligations and benefits.
He said permanent residence class may remove the burden on some applicants who would otherwise prefer to merely retain the benefits of travelling in and out of the country without the need for additional paperwork.
“For those applying for citizenship, permanent residence becomes the gate. Their conduct and contributions as permanent residents would weigh heavily in the consideration of their application for citizenship. I can’t see why this matter has not been addressed to date,” he said.
Hon Wale adds the Bill would have benefited from a carefully thought-out robust migration policy.
He said Government must give some urgency to formulating such a policy as an important part of its socio-economic policy.
“Parliament should therefore expect more substantive reforms as a result of such a migration policy, when it is finally formulated,” he said.