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Parliament is adjourned until Wednesday 31st October 2018.  

Parliamentary Strengthening Project

 

A one day hearing into the Solomon Islands National Provident Fund (SINPF) (Amendment) Bill 2018 which provides for a new voluntary pension scheme to be operated by SINPF was successfully held last Friday, 28th September 2018 at the National Parliament House.

This was after BLC completed its two weeks hearing into the Traditional Governance and Custom Facilitation Bill 2018 from Tuesday 18th September to Wednesday 26th September 2018.

The SINPF (Amendment) Bill 2018 allows those in the informal employment to also save for retirement. This saving scheme is called the YouSAVE, a new voluntary pension scheme to be operated by NPF.

This new scheme improves the financial inclusion of pension savings in Solomon Islands and is supported by the Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme.

Other amendments are also made to bolster the financial stability of the Special Death Benefit entitlement to NPF members.

Currently the special death benefit yearly premium has not been updated in over 40 years and is currently set too low for the Solomon Islands National Provident Fund to provide an appropriate Special Death Benefit to its members.

The amendments will update the special death benefit premium and other monetary amounts specified in the Act that have been eroded by inflation over the last 40 years which no longer appropriately reflect an appropriate monetary amount.

These amendments to the NPF Act will also change the timing for the declaration of the yearly interest to be credited to members’ accounts.

The amendments will change the timing from the end of the financial year which is in June, to three months after the end of the financial year which is the end of September.

This will allow the SINPF to make the decision of how much interest to credit to members’ accounts based on audited financial accounts, rather than on unaudited accounts that could change.

This change aims to improve the financial soundness of SINPF decision – making.

Those who appeared before the BLC on Friday include:

  • Ministry of Finance and Treasury
  • Solomon Islands National Provident Fund
  • Legal Draftsperson
  • Central Bank of Solomon Islands
  • Law Reform Unit
  • The Credit Union league
  • SI-National Council of Women
  • Women’s Group Representatives and
  • Solomon Islands Women In Business Association
  • Indigenous Business Representatives

MONDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER 2018

The Parliamentary Bills and Legislation Committee in its deliberative meeting this morning resolve to begin hearing into the Traditional Governance and Customs Facilitation Bill 2018 at 9:30am tomorrow Tuesday 18 Sept 2018.

The object of this Bill is to provide a framework to regulate the traditional governance system in Solomon Islands. This Bill provides for the institutionalization, management and regulation of traditional governance systems. It formally establishes a platform to recognize, strengthen and empower the informal governing structures. On that basis, the current traditional governance system will become part of the formal system.

Further, the Bill provides for the promotion and preservation of traditional norms, protocols, values, and practices. Traditional norms and practices are essential aspects of traditional governance in Solomon Islands in terms of identity and belonging to a certain tribe or clan. Additionally, these customary attributes play a major role in social cohesion, harmony and respect in traditional Solomon Islands society since time immemorial. This Bill aims to preserve and pass on these customary practices and norms to future generations.

The Bill aims to empower tribal chiefs and traditional leaders in dispute resolution. It facilitates their participation, coordination and contribution in partnership dialogues between the government and traditional institutions. It establishes a platform for traditional leaders and tribal chiefs to participate in peacebuilding, community policing, community respect, environmental preservation, development partnerships and the management of customary properties. It enables traditional leaders and tribal chiefs to play an active formal role in decision making process. This allows them to be involved in economic and social matters.

The Bill has a total of 33 clauses which divided into 6 parts. You can access and read in detail the clauses of the Bill on this website “What’s new in Parliament column”

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