Launch of the consultation paper for enquiry on ‘Personal Harm Offences’.
The Solomon Islands Law Reform Commission (SILRC) will launch its consultation paper for an enquiry into the laws that apply to personal harm offences, on Monday 10th October 2016 at Mendana Hotel. The launch of the consultation paper marks the beginning of public consultations by the SILRC for this enquiry.
The consultation paper is titled ‘Personal Harm Offences Consultation Paper’. The paper is part of a review that the SILRC is doing of the Penal Code [Cap 26] of Solomon Islands. It considers parts in the Penal Code that apply when an attack or threat of attack is inflicted or directed at another person which do not result in death but fear, injury or harm is done to the other person.
The consultation paper is planned to be launched by the Minister for Justice and Legal Affairs, the Honourable William B. Marau.
The law on personal harm offences were introduced in the Solomon Islands in the early 1960s, and are based on the English law.
The personal harm offences covered in the paper are: 1) assaults which include common assaults, assaults causing actual bodily harm, acts intended to cause grievous harm, unlawful wounding, and grievous harm; 2) poisoning; 3) kidnapping and abduction; 4) criminal reckless and negligence 5) Failure to supply necessaries and cruelty to children; 6) Intimidation, molestation and making a written threat to kill; and 7) negligent act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to human life.
The SILRC has identified a number of issues which needs to be considered for reform in order to accommodate the current and future circumstances of the Country. The issues are as follows:
Lack of definitions for some personal harm offences in the Penal Code.
The degree of penalties should consider the different circumstances of which the offences are committed.
The development of personal harm offences which raises the need of some offences to be included in the Penal Code.
The need to reform the offences to protect the vulnerable people in the society.
The main objective of this Consultation Paper is to raise awareness to the important stakeholders, interested individuals and the public at large of the current law and the issues relating to the personal harm offences. The Consultation Paper is also aimed at encouraging stakeholders and the public to come forward and discuss their views and comments on the personal harm offences and how the law should be reformed. This is to assist the SILRC to develop recommendations for changes to the current law on personal harm offences that will reflect the changing societal views and aspirations.
The SILRC through its legal staff will conduct consultation on this enquiry, and hopes to engage with as many people as possible during its consultations.