The fight for the Malietoa title

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Dear Editor,

It’s a real shame that there is so much animosity and infighting in this family, as it does not live up to the name of Malietoa. 

It comes from a place of lack, of hurt, of disharmony and attachment to aspirations of privilege and power that the title carries. 

This is the undoing and the downfall. 

We cannot judge the former HOS for his personal relations, that was his business, however, we can view this very public and discordant inter-family rivalry as unfortunate, as it undermines the statesmanship and honourable service that the late Malietoa Tanumafili II gave to the sovereignty, independence and growth of Samoa as a nation for over forty years.

This fighting is childish as it’s over something they already have, the lineage and custodianship of the name. 

How unfortunate and sad. This behaviour is so unbecoming of the name! 

Instead, we should come together as a family, sit down with the villages and sort out our differences amicably, in a noble and honourable way. 

Ten years is a long time to let differences go unresolved! 

Let’s not forget that our progenitor was a man of peace and humility. That he lived in service of the greater good of his country.

But more so than this man, is the name Malietoa and for every Malietoa descendant, it is a name that is so transcendent of individualism and personal politics. 

It is synonymous with the very building blocks of Samoa as a people and it’s traditions, it’s ancient history, it’s legends, it’s culture! It goes beyond Samoa, into the histories of Tonga, Fiji and beyond to the rest of the Pacific family that we are a part of. It’s important to acknowledge the grievances of family members regarding this issue. 

However, to put things into perspective, to be a part of the Malietoa lineage, is to be part of Samoa’s lineage and heritage! 

It’s something to be very proud of and so perhaps as a family, we should look upon this as an opportunity to be good custodians of the name and title, because it’s more than the sum total of individual differences! 

Are we being good custodians to the name?

The title needs to live on and make it’s presence felt in the cycle of things, in the whole transaction of tradition and culture. 

Let us move on with gratitude, peace, forgiveness and love! Keep the name alive and the title in service of the greater good! Peace.

 

Auimatagi S.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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