PM challenges people to take the country forward
RAMSI officially leaves the country today.
And the onus to lead this nation is now in our hands of the citizens of this country, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare stated on Thursday.
“We must stand united for the course of the justice and peace and we need to work together even more than ever in order for us to build peace, guarantee security, and foster sustainable economic development,” Mr Sogavare said in a powerful speech delivered last night at the RAMSI’s farewell ceremony at Lawson Tama.
“The moment we talked so much about and wish has now come!
“This is the moment when we must say goodbye to our friends and begin the moment of truth for SI.
“A moment when we must begin the arduous journey of nation building on our own, but yes on a firm footing established for us by the success story of RAMSI.”
Mr Sogavare said the mission is a success story that took 14 expensive and eventful years to write.
“A story that cost tax payers of Australia and New Zealand a total of SBD $17billion to write; a story that is literally written in blood, sweat and tears of men and women of the 15 member states of Pacific Islands Forum.
“A story that is sealed by the supreme sacrifice made by six brave sons of the Pacific who lost their lives in the making of this story.
“The journey in the writing of this story was not all smooth and there were differing views on the materials to be used to develop and script of the story.
“We now have a country that is safer to live in and where business and commerce can once again thrive to support the functioning of the government system.
“We now have a police force that gained the full confidence of the people of this country, having gone through comprehensive disciplinary process and can now stand tall as one of the best police force in the region.
“We now have a country where children can go to school without having to be concerned about their safety.
“We now have a country where our people can go about their daily works of life without having to be concerned about being subjected to extortion and deprivation.
“We now have a country where we can hold free elections to decide on the composition of a government.
“We now have a country that we can once again invite foreign investments to develop our areas of strength.
“We now have a country that can now meaningfully engage with our development partners, in other words we can fully function as a sovereign country.”
Mr Sogavare stated RAMSI’s legacy is a platform where we build our strength and forge a common future together.
“We have done it before and we shall do it again.
“Solomon Islands are our land and our country-so let us stand united from shore to shore to say thank you RAMSI and we bid you farewell.”
By TEDDY KAFO, Solomon Star News