A new Certificate of Law Course designed for Members of Parliament has been launched by the University of the South Pacific (U.S.P.).
The launch took place at the Legislative Conference Room in Tuana’imato last Tuesday.
The one-year Certificate consists of six subjects and aims to provide Parliamentarians with foundational knowledge both on common law and Samoa’s statutory law.
The courses include an introduction to the different types of law, legal interpretation, law for administrators, business law and civil courts among other.
Lectures will take place at the Alafua Campus and at Tuana’imato when Parliament is in session. This flexibility is key to enable attendance by Members of Parliament throughout the year.
The United Nations Development Programme (U.N.D.P) is funding the participation of 18 Members of Parliament, as part of its overall work on supporting governance in Samoa.
Helping to strengthen parliamentary systems around the world is part of U.N.D.P’s mission and it is essential for greater government accountability, foster democracy, support equality and ensure the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
On the day of the event, Lizbeth Cullity, U.N.D.P. Resident Representative delivered the main address along with Leaupepe Toleafoa Fa’afisi, Speaker of the House, and Leatuaolevao Ruby Va’a, U.S.P. Campus Director.
“This programme will strengthen the legal knowledge of Samoan Parliamentarians and it will assist them in the process of reviewing new and existing legislation with a clear benefit for the economic, social and sustainable development of the country,” said Ms. Cullity.
“U.N.D.P. is thrilled to support activities that will catapult Samoa forward as a democratic nation in the Pacific Region. A country’s strength and solidarity rests on a solid foundation of laws and regulations which support its Constitution and will allow it to grow and flourish safely and independently.”
Leatuaolevao said the programme is yet another first for Samoa, in that this is tailored “specifically to meet Samoa’s expressed needs.”
Members of Parliament have begun introductory lectures, and will complete the course by December 2017.