The Chief Justice Sir Albert Palmer is pleased to announce the appointment of two new Commissioners of the High Court of Solomon Islands.
They are Augustine Sylver AULANGA (Principal Magistrate) and Myonnie Tutuo OFAGA (Registrar of High Court), who took their Oaths of Allegiance and Oaths of Office before His Excellency Patteson Oti, Acting Governor-General of Solomon Islands, today, the 17th November 2023.
The two Commissioners have been recruited purposely to assist in the High Court with the hearing and disposal of civil cases. Their appointment is for a period of six months.
The High Court continues to experience a heavy work load of civil cases, increasing to about 700 cases and resulting in a huge backlog and delay in the hearing, listing and timely disposal of cases.
It is hoped that with their experience in the hearing and dealing with civil cases in their current and ongoing positions that they will be able to use that background knowledge, understanding and skills to alleviate the issue of delay in the hearing of civil cases.
Their appointments are timely and we look forward to positive outcomes in the reduction of the civil backlog in the High Court.
Cmnr. Augustine S Aulanga
Commissioner Aulanga’s education journey began at Ambe Primary School in East Fataleka. He did his secondary education at Siota Secondary School in the Central Islands Province and later to King George Sixth School in Honiara.
In 2004, he undertook his law studies in Papua New Guinea and after graduating was admitted to practice at the National Court of PNG in 2008. Upon his return to Solomon Islands, he worked for six years as a Crown Prosecutor in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions before taking up the post of a Principal Magistrate at the Central Magistrates’ Court in Honiara.
Amongst his duties as a Principal Magistrate, he was also designated to be the Head of the Civil Jurisdiction in the Central Magistrates’ Court in Honiara. He has been working as a Magistrate since 2015.
He hails from Feranagono village in East Fataleka, Malaita Province. He holds a Bachelor of Laws with Honours, from the University of Papua New Guinea in 2008 and a Master of Laws in Dispute Resolution from the University of New South Wales in Australia in 2020 under the prestigious DFAT Scholarship.
As Head of the Civil Division in the Magistrates’ Court he has presided over a vast variety of civil matters and has been performing substantial clerical work for the Customary Land Appeal Court (“CLAC”) for Central Islands, Malaita and Isabel. The huge reduction of the backlog of civil and CLAC cases at the Central Magistrates’ Court came about as a result of his effective and efficient management and timely disposal of cases under his leadership. His experience and exemplary work performance in dealing with civil cases at the Central Magistrates’ Court places him in an advantageous position to assist with the work demands in the High Court.
He looks forward to the discharge of the duties required of him in his new capacity and to work together with the Judges and the staff of the High Court to relish the challenges faced in the administration of justice to the people of Solomon Islands.
Cmnr. Myonnie Tutuo Ofaga
Commissioner Ofaga graduated with a Bachelor of Law (LLB) from the University of the South Pacific, Emalus Campus, Vanuatu where she studied law from 2003 to 2006.
In 2007 she attended the Institute of Justice and Law Studies, University of the South Pacific and completed her Professional Diploma in Legal Practice (PDLP). She also completed a Professional Diploma in Legal drafting (PDLD) from the University of the South Pacific in April 2012.
From March 2008 to date, she has served in the High Court and Court of Appeal of Solomon Islands, National Judiciary as a Judges’ Associate, Deputy Registrar and Registrar.
Commissioner Ofaga hails from Cheke village, Marovo Lagoon.
The National Judiciary is pleased to welcome the appointment of the two new Commissioners and look forward to their invaluable contribution and service in strengthening the work of the courts at these challenging times to deliver quality justice to the people of Solomon Islands. We wish them well as they step up to their new roles and duties on the High Court bench.