Caretaker Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, has defended the government’s decision to appoint two long serving members of the H.R.P.P to the Council of Deputies.
“Every appointment is from God,” Tuilaepa told the Samoa Observer yesterday.
“So from my point of view, the Opposition (Party) should’ve complained to God. They should’ve questioned him and asked why the appointments were made the way it was."
“You must not forget that any appointment from God is made through the Spirit that whispers to the people reminding them that this is what the Constitution says and this is how it is.”
Tuilaepa made the comments in response to questions from the Tautua Samoa Party about the appointment of Le Mamea Ropati and Tuiloma Pule Lameko to the role. The appointments were made last week after Parliament supported a motion moved by Prime Minister.
But the Tautua Samoa Party’s Shadow Minister of Finance, Afualo Dr. Wood Salele, said the appointments failed to recognise the contribution made by Savai’i to the development of Samoa.
“It’s not a government of Tumua only - it is one that consists of Tumua ma Pule…I feel for the people of Pule Ono because they are just staring on while Tumua enjoys it all,” Afualo said.
Opposition leader, Palusalue Fa’apo II, said the positions should only be reserved for holders of Tama Aiga titles.
But Prime Minister disagrees.
He said Afualo should go back and read his Bible.
“That Professor needs to read the Bible again and try to understand the deeper meaning of it,” he said.
“This is probably the reason why the Constitution was written the way it was by our forebears.”
Tuilaepa said the Constitution does not spell out that only Tama Aiga title holders are eligible to the position.
Besides, Tuilaepa said he is surprised that the Opposition Party is making a fuss now.
“If they had such a suggestion, why didn’t they raise it in Parliament,” he said.
“The problem is the decision has been made and now they question a decision that has already been agreed upon.”
Tuilaepa maintained that the positions are opened for individuals who are suitable.
“The positions are opened to anyone that is eligible under the law,” he said. “Whether they are members from Upolu and Savai’i, that will be it. If it turns out they are all from Upolu then that is how it is. The same if the appointment ends up being all from Savai’i, it is what it is.”