PM Departs For Conservation Congress in Hawaii

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Prime Minister Sogavare: I am duty-bound to consult the Provincial Premiers on how best we should move forward together in completing this important task.

Prime Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare will be leaving for the World Conservation Congress of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in Honolulu, Hawaii today, Sunday, 28th August.

The convention to be hosted by the Governor of Hawaii will bring together Pacific Island Heads of Governments as well as Governors and Mayors from cities and states on the Pacific Rim and indigenous leaders.

“The primary purpose of the Summit is the formalisation of a 2030 Pacific Ocean-wide partnership and coalition for action, starting in 2016 and convening every three years to add more partners and track progress on the path towards realisation of a sustainable Pacific Ocean by 2030.

“The partnership begins by connecting the actions and aspirations of the population centres seated around the Pacific Rim to align with the vast ocean states of the Pacific islands and private sector leadership. The actions fulfill the visionary commitments of Pacific leaders and will shift the collective impact on the Pacific Ocean towards the global target of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 14 on Oceans.

“The path to achieving these aims has already been made clear through the Paris Agreement reached late in 2015 at COP21 in Paris, which served as a sweeping global agreement to address many of the human drivers currently poised to destabilise the balance of the Pacific Ocean along with many other aspects of our planet’s environment.

“While COP21 serves as a platform for national-level action to limit global temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, the Pacific Ocean Coalition links the visionary leadership of the Pacific island leaders with like-minded leaders of cities, states, and businesses that are making a difference.

“This begins a journey toward 2030 that will continue to bring more countries, cities, states, and businesses to the table for action. We hope that at the first UN Oceans Summit in Fiji in 2017 the Pacific Ocean partners will lead a strong call for similar 2030 Ocean partnerships across the globe,” the IUCN stated in reference to the congress.

At the margins of this summit, Prime Minister Sogavare will also attend the first meeting of the Pacific Coalition on West Papua (PCWP), an initiative by the Prime Minister himself in his capacity as the head of the Solomon Islands Government and also as Chair of the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

The PCWP, which had its introductory meeting at the sidelines of the recent 4th Pacific Islands Development Forum in Honiara, aims to expand the advocacy network on the issue of West Papua from the bounds of the MSG bloc of nations to the greater Pacific region to enhance the level of the support it has behind its resolve to take up this pressing issue with the United Nations for intervention.

The Coalition’s current membership consists of Solomon Islands, the Republic of Vanuatu, Front de Liberation Nationale Kanak et Socialiste (FLNKS) and the United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP).

Representatives of the governments of the Republic of Marshall Islands and the Kingdom of Tonga who attended the introductory meeting have indicated strong support for the initiative.

The Prime Minister’s delegation includes, Madam Emmy Sogavare, Deputy Chair of Caucus, Hon Namson Tran, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management and Meteorology, Dr Melchior Mataki, Deputy Secretary to the Prime Minister, Derek Futaiasi, Policy Secretary for the Resources Sector in the Prime Minister’s Office, Dr Chris Vehe, Solomon Islands Government Special Envoy on West Papua, Rex Horoi, Foreign Affairs Protocol Officer, Mr Philip Moses Fafe, Press Secretary to the Prime Minister, Ms Deli Oso, Executive Personal Secretary to the Prime Minister, Ms Suzie Wale and two Police Close-Protection Officers.

The Prime Minister and his delegation will arrive back in Honiara on Monday, 5th September 2016.