Leader of the Opposition (Solomon Islands)

Solomon Mamaloni Manasseh Sogavare Peter Kenilorea

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The Leader of the Opposition (or Leader of the Official Opposition) in Solomon Islands is a Member of Parliament who commands a large minority of his peers, united in loyal opposition to government. The title of "Leader of the Opposition" is common to the Commonwealth realms and several other Commonwealth countries, though in Solomon Islands it is specifically defined by the Constitution. The Leader of the Opposition appoints and leads a Shadow Cabinet. The current Leader of the Opposition, since December 2014, is Jeremiah Manele.

Constitutional provisions

The position of "Leader of the Official Opposition" is established by article 66 of the Constitution of 1978, which has been the country's Constitution since independence. Article 66 states that the Leader of the Opposition is appointed by the Governor-General, who chooses the Member of Parliament who is considered leader by a significant opposition group within Parliament.[1] In practice, this means the Leader of the Opposition is elected by the members of the Opposition, and then formally recognised and appointed by the Governor-General.[2] He or she is dismissed by the Governor-General if he or she no longer enjoys the support of the Opposition.[3]

Article 66 also provides for the Governor-General to appoint a Leader of the Independent Members - i.e., a parliamentary leader of Members of Parliament who remain unaligned with the government or with the Opposition.[4]


The following have served as Leaders of the Official Opposition in Solomon Islands. (Given the fluctuating nature of majority coalitions, successful motions of no confidence and thus changes in government are frequent during a parliamentary term. Consequently, there are in most cases several successive Leaders of the Opposition during a single Parliament.)[5]

Steve Abana of the Democratic Party became Leader of the Opposition on 30 August 2010, following the 2010 general election.[6] He resigned from that position in late March 2011, and the Opposition chose Derek Sikua to replace him.[7] Sikua thus led the 2011-2014 Shadow Cabinet.

On 9 December 2014, following the 2014 general election, Jeremiah Manele was appointed as Leader of the Opposition.[8] He held that post until 17 November 2017.[9] In 2018, Manasseh Maelanga was Leader of the Opposition.[10] And following the April 2019 general election, the Leader of the Opposition is Matthew Wale.[11]

Parliament Leaders of the Opposition Constituency Political party Prime Ministers
First (1976-1980) Bartholomew Ulufa’alu East Honiara Sir Peter Kenilorea
Second (1980-1984) Solomon Mamaloni, then
Sir Peter Kenilorea
West Makira
East 'Are'are
Sir Peter Kenilorea, then
Solomon Mamaloni
Third (1984-1988) Solomon Mamaloni West Makira Sir Peter Kenilorea, then
Ezekiel Alebua
Fourth (1989-1993) Andrew Nori, then
Joses Tuhanuku
West 'Are'are
Solomon Mamaloni
Fifth (1994-1997) Solomon Mamaloni, then
Baddley Devesi, then
Edward Huni’ehu
West Makira
North-East Guadalcanal
East 'Are'are
Francis Billy Hilly, then
Solomon Mamaloni
Sixth (1997-2001) Solomon Mamaloni, then
Manasseh Sogavare, then
Bartholomew Ulufa'alu
West Makira
East Choiseul
Bartholomew Ulufa'alu, then
Manasseh Sogavare
Seventh (2001-2005) Patteson Oti, then
John Garo, then
Francis Billy Hilly
Temotu Nende
West Kwaio
Sir Allan Kemakeza
Eighth (2006-2010) ? Snyder Rini, then
Manasseh Sogavare, then
Derek Sikua
Ninth (2010-2014) Steve Abana, then
Derek Sikua
East Central Guadalcanal
Danny Philip, then
Gordon Darcy Lilo
Tenth (2014- ) Jeremiah Manele Hograno-Kia-Havulei Democratic Alliance Manasseh Sogavare

See also


  1. ^ Constitution of Solomon Islands
  2. ^ "Abana is new Opposition leader" Archived 16 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine, Solomon Star, 1 September 2010
  3. ^ Constitution of Solomon Islands
  4. ^ Constitution of Solomon Islands
  5. ^ "Members of Parliament", National Parliament of Solomon Islands
  6. ^ "Abana is new Opposition leader" Archived 16 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine, Solomon Star, 1 September 2010
  7. ^ "Revamped Solomons opposition on attack" Archived 14 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine, Radio Australia, 30 March 2011
  8. ^ "MANELE APPOINTED OPPOSITION LEADER, MAELANGA INDEPENDENT", Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation, 9 December 2014
  9. ^ "Hon. Jeremiah Manele", National Parliament of Solomon Islands
  10. ^ Hansard for 18 July 2018
  11. ^ "Solomon Islands Opposition questions new cabinet line-up", Pacific Islands News Association, 1 May 2019