Solidarity Bloc responds to Prime Minster

Opposition Leader MP Ishmael Kalsakau and MP Sato Kilman. File Photo

The Solidarity Bloc led by the Opposition Leader MP Ishmael Kalsakau and MP Sato Kilman issued a response to the Daily Post’s front page article on the Prime Minister’s remarks on political instability yesterday afternoon.

Prime minister Charlot Salwai has made it clear that dissolution may be an option if political instability continues.

“The PM stated, among other matters that he would be seeking the Council of Ministers’ approval to seek an early dissolution in the event there continues to be disunity,” the Solidarity Bloc noted.

This, it stated, is a “sure sign the Prime minister either no longer has the numbers to govern, or he is struggling to control his coalition government”.

The bloc reflected that its formation was on the basis of frustration because the PM did not deal with the Deputy Prime Minister, Joe Natuman given that there is purportedly advice from the State Law the DPM must vacate office as Member of Parliament by the 16th of April.

The outburst by the solidarity bloc was spurred by allegations the PM has approached the Speaker of Parliament, allegedly seeking his cooperation to extend the period of Mr. Natuman’s term in office beyond the 16th.

The bloc’s main contention was over the integrity of the Vanuatu Government and the Republic’s institutions in ensuring there is no criminality attached to the institutions governing the people.

It claims the PM has treated the matter as a show of numbers rather than addressing the issue, and has threatened the abuse of executive power to bring about a dissolution.

The Solidarity Bloc calls on the President to shy away from what it describes as “juvenile intentions”, while urging the PM to ensure the integrity of the nation is not called into question.

It says it is a bit late for concerns over the struggle of the people, when the problems of struggling mothers have not been alleviated during the government’s two years in power, adding the increase in Value Added Tax flies straight in the face of those concerned.

The bloc maintained there is no free education, and described the PM’s mention of Chinese tourists as inadequate appreciation of the level of tourist activity received from Vanuatu’s close neighbours.

“The prime minister now runs a minority government,” the solidarity bloc stated.

The office of the Prime Minister has maintained that leaders of the political parties in the coalition government have pledged to support the Salwai-led government until 2020.

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