Honiara sees an exodus of people back to their provincial homes 

Dear Editor,

Please consider this letter.

The news from the Solomon Islands today tells of an exodus from Honiara with hundreds of people returning to their home provinces following the declaration of a State of Public Emergency announced by the Governor General, Sir David Vunagi, GCMG, last week and measures now in place which has rendered Honiara and emergency zone.

The people fleeing have heeded advice from the Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, to return to their homes in the provinces while the government tightens controls to effectively prevent coronavirus entering the country.

The Solomon Islands has no reported case of coronavirus as yet and a ban on international flights has been put in place.

It is believed the government released funds to MPs to help with the repatriation of people to the provinces and outer islands.

Meanwhile in neighbouring Papua New Guinea, the Prime Minister, James Marape, has revealed that his government is considering asking banks to defer loan repayments by three months to help local people and businesses.

The PNG Prime Minister also revealed plans by the government for an economic stimulus strategy due to the economic strain being faced by the country arising from Covid- 19.Mr.Marape additionally mentioned his government was also working to utilise its business stimulus fund under the 2020 budget.News sources:  Radio New Zealand and Solomon Star News.
Yours sincerely

Frank Short