Sir Peter Kenilorea
|Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands|
19 November 1984 - 1 December 1986
7 July 1978 - 31 August 1981
|Born||23 May 1943|
Malaita, Solomon Islands
|Died||24 February 2016 (aged 72)|
Honiara, Solomon Islands,
|Political party||Solomon Islands United Party|
Kenilorea was born in Takataka village on Malaita island, of 'Are'are ethnicity. He was trained as a teacher for the South Seas Evangelical Church and a co-founder of the Solomon Islands Christian Association. As a young man he helped to found the Solomon Islands United Party.
In the 1973 general elections he ran in the 'Are'are constituency, losing to David Kausimae. By the time of the 1976 elections the constituency was split and Kenilorea was elected to Parliament in the East 'Are'are constituency. He became Chief Minister of the Solomon Islands in the same year and led the country to independence from Britain in 1978. He then served as the first Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands until 1981, and again from 1984 to 1986. He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1988 to 1989 and from 1990 to 1993.
Following fighting between the Malaita Eagle Force and the Isatabu Freedom Movement, Kenilorea was, along with Paul Tovua, co-chairman of the peace talks, and he became Chairman of the eight-member Peace Monitoring Council, which was created in August 2000. In the Seventh Parliament, which sat from 2001 to 2005, he was Speaker of Parliament.
He was a candidate for the post of Governor-General in mid-June 2004, but he received only 8 of 41 votes in Parliament, placing second behind Nathaniel Waena, who received 27 votes. Following the 2006 general election, he was re-elected as Speaker of Parliament without opposition in April 2006. He held the position until 2010.
He subsequently sought to return to Parliament, and was an unsuccessful candidate in a by-election in East 'Are'are in August 2012. He died on 24 February 2016 of natural causes. Kenilorea's son Peter Kenilorea Jr. was elected a member of parliament in April 2019.