RAMSI commends SIG for initiative on planning for drawdown

The Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI) has commended the Solomon Islands Government for its initiative of getting all the government Ministries involved in the work of the Mission to discuss the drawdown of RAMSI in 2017 at a workshop held in Honiara on 25 November 2015.

The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat in Suva, Fiji coordinated the one-day workshop following a request from the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Police, National Security and Correctional Services, Mr Edmund Sikua.

The Permanent Secretaries and senior officials from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Office of the Prime Minister, Development Planning and Aid Coordination and Police, National Security and Correctional Services attended the workshop. Representatives of RAMSI were also invited to address the workshop.

“RAMSI welcomes this initiative by the Solomon Islands Government to bring together these Government Ministries who are involved in the work of the Mission to start discussing the drawdown at this critical phase of the intervention,” said Alex Cameron, Acting RAMSI Special Coordinator.

“It is important that these Government Ministries have a good understanding of the RAMSI mandate, the work RAMSI had delivered and the Mission’s plans until 2017 so that Solomon Islands can make the best possible decisions about resources it needs to sustain what has been established,” said Mr Cameron.

He added, “RAMSI has started the dialogue on the drawdown of the Mission with the Solomon Islands Government and the other regional partners including Australia and New Zealand on what assistance will be given after 2017. There has been no final decision made as yet but there is assurance there will be ongoing assistance.”

During the workshop, RAMSI Acting Special Coordinator, Mr Cameron and the RAMSI Participating Police Force Commander, Greg Harrigan presented on RAMSI’s History, Priorities and Drawdown and the RAMSI Assistant Special Coordinator, Masi Lomaloma, who has been with the Mission since 2005 shared some lessons from his experiences so that the various stakeholders can learn from as the drawdown is discussed.