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Solomon Star - OUR VIEW

A doctor with heart for SI

ONE of the famous faces and names at the Central Hospital, Dr. Herman Oberli leaves today after a 10 years' stint in the Solomons - a place he now calls his second home.

Not many of the expatriates are our good friends - they left us after a few months or years. Even Solomon Islanders head out when Dr. Oberli decided to stay on at the height of the conflict - to cure thousands of Solomon Islanders. The very person whom he taught, a Solomon Islander, also fled.

The man from Switzerland, instead, extend his power and brought Swiss people in - when everybody else thought it was unsafe.

Such a character is hard to find.

Most of our foreign friends returned and stockpile the rubbish on SI - as a no go zone.

But Dr. Oberli's a different character. He turned the bad into good - using his influence to lure tourists from Europe and his one man mission was a success.

The many who had suffered from broken bone will remember the name - Oberli.

Besides dealing with those with fractured bones, Dr. Oberli revolutionised the hospital's department to accommodate those with damaged bones.

What Dr. Oberli did, should be an example to Solomon Islanders, we must learn to help ourselves. If we can't then who else will do it?

The Dr. Oberli story is an inspiration one. He did not leave, when there were problems. He remained and became part of the solving equation.

Though life was miserable in Honiara those days, it was the love and dedication he had for our country that inspired him to stay on and faced the challenges.

His daring was what most Solomon Islanders highly appreciated.

The challenge now is - we must not ask too much from our country, but what we can do to help it.

Today, our society is dominated with money.

Nothing is free or cheaper.

A lot of these are simulated claims for nothing. Instead of building our country, we are destroying it.

If we are honest with what we do - we can make a difference.

SOLOMON STAR - Tuesday 24 June, 2003, page 4

© June 2003 Solomon Star