Biographical entry: Belamatanga, Mathew (1925 - )



Mathew Belamatanga was born at Kobiloko, Guadalcanal in 1925. He was educated on Guadalcanal at the Catholic Tangarare School and then for three years at Marist Brothers School at Marau. He joined the U.S. Forces as a guide and watchman during the Second World War. In 1947 he started the 'Development Society for Native Races', a social movement on Guadalcanal (sometimes called "the Freedom Movement"), for which he was imprisoned for sedition in 1949. He later served on the Guadalcanal Council for eighteen years and was elected four times as Guadalcanal Council President, was chairman of the Council's Rural Training Committee, and a member of the Central Solomons Development and Planning Committee. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Legislative Council (q.v.) election in 1967 and for the Governing Council (q.v.) elections in 1970 but was elected the member for West Guadalcanal and Russell Islands in the 1973 Governing Council elections. He was elected the member for West Guadalcanal in the Legislative Assembly in 1976. In 1973 he was divorced with three children. (NS 7 July 1973; SND 9 July 1976; Laracy 1983, 156-161; Bennett 1987, 299; David Akin, personal communication, 22 Sept. 2012)

Related Corporate Bodies

Published resources


  • Bennett, Judith A., Wealth of the Solomons: A History of a Pacific Archipelago, 1800-1978, University of Hawai'i Press, Honolulu, 1987. Details

Edited Books

  • Laracy, Hugh M. (ed.), Pacific Protest: The Maasina Rule Movement, Solomon Islands, 1944-1952, Institute of Pacific Studies, University of the South Pacific, Suva, 1983. Details


  • Solomons News Drum, 1974-1982. Details
  • British Solomon Islands Protectorate (ed.), British Solomon Islands Protectorate News Sheet (NS), 1955-1975. Details