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Pests hit Parliament

Government urged to wake up against Giant African snail and Rhinoceros beetle threat


THE Government has been urged to take serious and more robust action on dealing with Giant African Snails and Rhinoceros Beetles.

Member of Parliament for East Central Guadalcanal Hon Ishmael Avui made the reiteration call in Parliament this week when contributing on the Sine Die motion moved by Prime Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare.

According to Hon Avui, the Giant African Snail was reported at a certain logging camp at Ranadi but the Government, through its responsible ministry, the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock “did not care to take serious action about it”.

“Subsequent reports about the destruction caused by the pest on Guadalcanal plains were also ignored.

“The Giant African Snail is now a menace to food gardens on Guadalcanal and certain Provinces.

“The Quarantine officials know about it. They know what to do, how to do it, but they do not want to deal with it. I now tend to think that this is conspiracy by Government official,” said Hon Avui.

The MP for East Central Guadalcanal said the Rhinoceros Beetle was reported in East Honiara two years ago.

“Today is now been sighted 50km from Honiara in my constituency and also at Selwyn College in West Guadalcanal.

“I have also, reported it in Caucus that the beetle is seen to be destroying young Oil Palm trees in GPPOL and is threatening the industry,” Avui said.

He then added that now that the country is talking about exporting cassava and taro and while he strongly supports the initiative, the wise thing to do he said, is to first “wage war on the two pests”.

He then told Parliament that if there is failure to act on the issue, these pests will cause a lasting disaster on both the country’s food security as well as the country’s only reliable source of revenue.