Corporate entry: Legislative Assembly
Under British Solomon Islands Order 1974, the existing Governing Council (q.v.) became the Legislative Assembly, implementing the recommendations of a Constitutional Select Committee that consisted of all members of the Governing Council in 1972 and 1973. The new 1974 Constitution (q.v.) increased the elected members to twenty-four, but with a return to the traditional division between the legislative and executive branches of the government, and a new ministerial system. A Council of Ministers replaced the old Governing Council sitting as an executive, and the committee system was altered to a ministerial system. The Council of Ministers consisted of a Chief Minister, the three ex-officio members (the Deputy Governor, Attorney-General and Financial Secretary) of the Legislative Assembly, and not less than four and not more than six elected members chosen as Ministers by the Chief Minister. The Governor (the new designation of the High Commissioner) presided over the Council of Ministers.
On 27 August, the elected members chose Solomon Mamaloni (q.v.) as their first Chief Minister, and he was sworn in on the same day. On Mamaloni's advice, the Governor then appointed five other elected members as Ministers. Six portfolios were established with the Chief Minister keeping control of Home Affairs until a sixth Minister was appointed in November. The Ministries were: Agriculture and Rural Economy; Education and Cultural Affairs; Home Affairs; Health and Welfare; Trade, Industry and Labour; and Works and Public Utilities. The Chief Minister remained responsible for immigration and for policy and coordination of the relationship with the South Pacific Commission. (AR 1974, 137-138; NS 6 Sept. 1974) The first meeting of the Legislative Assembly took place on 4 October 1974.
Under an Order in Council from November 1975, the 1974 Constitution was amended and self-government was conferred on the Protectorate from January 1976. When an election was held for the Legislative Assembly later in 1976 there were thirty-eight seats, the number which remained at independence in 1978. The first Monday in October was declared a public holiday henceforth to mark the achievement of ministerial government. (SND 3 June 1977)
- Solomons News Drum, 1974-1982. Details
- British Solomon Islands Protectorate (ed.), British Solomon Islands Protectorate News Sheet (NS), 1955-1975. Details
- British Solomon Islands Protectorate, British Solomon Islands Protectorate Annual Reports (AR), 1896-1973. Details