Former Chief of Staff (CoS) in the Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (OPMC) the Late Robson Djokovic was laid to eternal rest at his home village in Kagau, Choiseul Province yesterday, 15th April.
In the funeral service to celebrate and honor his life, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare attributed the late Chief of Staff as the glue that holds the political unit in the OPMC together and keep the team moving forward.
“I want to take this opportunity to publicly acknowledge the outstanding work of the late Chief of Staff and other capable and knowledgeable Officers who are effectively the operators in the engine room of the government”, the Prime Minister stated.
The Prime Minister adds, the position of the Chief of Staff is widely recognized as one of great power and influence, owing to the nature of his work which include daily contact with the Prime Minister personally. This explains why he is usually the first target of any criticism levelled at the government.
”…I am amazed at the level of stamina he has developed to weather the criticisms. I personally gain a lot of strength from the way he handled these criticisms and personal attacks”, the Prime Minister expressed.
PM Sogavare further pointed out that when it comes to defending his convictions, the former CoS does not hold back any punches.
The Prime Minister further added that late Djokovic is among some of the most hard-working servants of the national government, burning the energy through late nights to meet deadlines, a quality now rare in the government circle.
Joining the Prime Minister to pay homage to the former Chief of Staff, the Special Secretary to Prime Minister Albert Kabui said, the responsibilities of the Chief of Staff is a challenging one.
SSPM Kabui said a better tomorrow for Solomon Islanders is late Djokovic’s all-time- number One-goal. As such, the former CoS always made sure political and administrative apparatuses of the government work collaboratively to implement and better deliver government policies in the Ministry level right down to the receiving end.
The SSPM Kabui further paid tribute to the late Chief of Staff by highlighting that late Djokovic played instrumental role in the revival of the Goldridge Mine, Development Bank of Solomon Islands, Commodities Export and Marketing Authority and instrumental in the direction of Tourism Solomons, Investment Corporation of Solomon Islands, Tina Hydro Project among other government institutions and projects. He also played advisory role to other sectors including the private sector.
Mr Kabui admitted, OPMC and the National Government will miss the industrious services of the late Robson, a big shoe to fill.
Close friend, John Muria Junior stated, the Late Robson has a heart of gold. He saw everyone as family, cared about those he came into contact with and loved kids. He believed in love.
“Rob cared about others more than he himself and would never refuse to assist anyone in need. He looked beyond public criticisms and always striving for a better tomorrow for Solomon Islanders.
Involved in the affairs of the Solomon Islands Government at a very senior level in the Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Late Robson had dedicated 17 years in Advisory roles (2006, 2015, 2019- till his demise).
The Late Chief Of Staff was also heavily involved in inter-governmental COVID 19 Oversight Committee and the various Economic working groups established by the government to effectively render advice to the Prime Minister and Cabinet on how to implement the Prime Minister’s delegated Powers under the State of Public Emergency laws, and to refocus the government’s development strategies in light of the negative effects of the 2021 riot on the economy.
In the more than 17 years of his involvement with the Solomon Islands Government, especially the government led by Prime Minister Sogavare, the late Chief of Staff developed himself to maturity in politics but also so is his concern about the development context of the country.
The Chief of Staff in any government… “works behind the scenes to solve problems, mediate disputes, and deal with issues before they are brought to the Prime Minister.
The late Robson’s responsibilities include leading the teams, easing communication and uniting the team of political appointees in the Prime Minister’s Office who are responsible for the line sectoral Ministries to propel them forward.
Though he will be missed, his legacies will continue to speak volumes’ of his contribution to the nation he so loved.
-PM Press Sec