Prime Minister honorable Jeremiah Manele MP, and Premier Derek Pongi (left of PM Manele) flanked by members of the executive government of Renbel Province. Photo credit @ PM Press Secretariat

RENNELL and Bellona Provincial Government under the leadership of honorable Derek Pongi has achieved one of its 100 days in office priorities when the province’s executive paid a courtesy call on the Prime Minister honorable Jeremiah Manele MP.

The Pongi led executive met with PM Manele this afternoon- 03rd July 2024- at the Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (OPMC).

Premier Pongi reiterated that it is one of the priorities of his government to pay a courtesy call on the Prime Minister and that that has been achieved.

The Premier highlighted that the big challenge for the Province is its infrastructure deficiency.

Pongi reiterated that the Islands of Rennell and Bellona need wharfs for ease of movement of people and services. Adding that shipping services to the two islands is hampered by the lack of proper ports.

The Premier further highlighted the need for better roads as the current state of the roads on the islands is bad. Adding that as a result of the poor condition of the road, life span of vehicles is often short- lived as well.

Pongi also called on the government to consider improving the condition of the airstrips on both Rennell and Bellona islands. The Premier added that volume capacity on planes is always a challenge as people often loaded the planes with goods. Premier is suggesting extra flights to counter this.

Premier Pongi is strongly suggesting alternative developments on the island rather than heavy reliance on mining. He calls for support from government in the areas of tourism and fisheries.

Pongi asked the government to consider setting up an extra Provincial Ward to counter the ‘tie’ that happen too often during the elections of the Premier and the Provincial Assembly Speaker.

Premier further stressed the need for a new Provincial Headquarter building to house the core staff members of the Province. At this time, the Provincial Assembly chamber is used as a make shift office for full- time staff members.

The Prime Minister in response, acknowledged the contribution of Rennell and Bellona Province to national development.

PM Manele assured the Premier that OPMC will coordinate with responsible line ministries to assist in the areas of infrastructure development.

The Prime Minister, however, stressed that right infrastructure is critical to overall development of any Province, and Renbel is no exception.

PM Manele highlighted the importance of sister relationship with Provinces in China, while acknowledging that the Renbel Province is in the process of establishing sister relationship with the Province of Hainan.

The Prime Minister stressed that such sister relationship is important to address gaps in development.

PM Manele encouraged Premier Derek Pongi and his executive to pursue the sister relationship with Hainan Province of China.

The Prime Minister assured the Pongi led executive of close working relationship with the national government to address the infrastructure challenges and moreso, leveraging on the tourism and fisheries potential of the Province.


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