Solomon Islands is a unitary state with two levels of government, the national government and provincial governments. The establishment of provincial governments is provided for by the Constitution of Solomon Islands and implemented by the Provincial Governments Act of 1981 (PGA). The PGA has been replaced by updated versions of the Act including the current Provincial Governments Act.
The Act established elected Provincial Assemblies, with powers to issue subordinate legislation called ordinances, within the national constitutional and legal framework. Each of Solomon Islands’ 9 Provinces has a Provincial Executive which is accountable to the Assembly. The Executive is composed of a Premier who is elected by an absolute majority of Provincial Assembly members. The Premier, once elected, appoints a deputy premier, and ministers with portfolio responsibilities.
Honiara is an exception to the PG Act as it does not have a provincial government and is recognised as Solomon Island’s capital territory. The national capital is instead governed by a city council which is headed by a mayor and draws its legal mandate from the Honiara City Council Act.
The administrative arm of the Provincial Governments is headed by a Provincial Secretary, who is answerable to the assembly through its executive in the same way Permanent Secretaries in the national administration are accountable to their ministers. Provincial staff are composed of staff posted by the MPGIS, staff employed by National line Ministries and working in the provinces, and staff directly employed by the provinces. All staff are supervised by the Provincial Secretaries, and accountable to the provincial executives and premiers.