Honiara : 28 January 2018
Letter to the Editors, Island Sun and Solomon Star newspapers
SUMITOMO’s FORMER PROSPECTING CAMP IN ISABEL PROVINCE.
In an article published in the SUN newspaper in late December last year it was claimed that SMM Solomon Ltd , as a subsidiary of Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., Ltd in Japan was donating its camp base in Isabel to Government to be converted into a hospital.
This is what the article read (quote)
“SMMS. Managing Director Yoritoshi Ochi will on Tuesday sign a deal with the landowner and the Ministry of Health to seal the deal this afternoon.
“A statement from SMM Solomon Ltd yesterday in its invitation to witness the occasion said, SMM Solomon Ltd is donating its prospecting camp facilities located in Leleghia Island in Isabel province to the Ministry of Health and Medical Services to be used as a Government hospital as a part of its CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility).
“We, SMMS, SIG and land owner are going to have a signing ceremony of memorandum of understanding (MOU) at 3pm tomorrow (today) 19th December at the Ministry of the Health.”
“The Ministry of Health is expected to issue a statement during the signing.
“The mining company decides to donate this office complex and staff dormitory following its move to pull out its nickel operation on Isabel.”
From enquiries that I have made with the MOHMS in both Honiara and Isabel Province the base camp facilities have not been handed over to the medical authorities in Isabel Province, albeit the MOHMS would very much like to acquire the buildings to be converted to hospital use if the structures accorded to the delineation policy guidelines of the MOHMS.
There is a growing local population in Isabel Province needing medical care and facilities such as the formed prospecting base camp, could be potentially very useful if acquired as, reportedly intended, by SMM’s Managing Director, Mr. Yonitoshi Ochi.
Perhaps, it is necessary for clarification of the situation regarding the prospecting base camp to be made by the Isabel Provincial Government, or a further statement made by Sumitomo Metal Mining Company.