Leave ‘my kids’ to scrap, P.M. says

Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi laughed yesterday when his opinion was sought about the legal battle between two senior lawyers before the Supreme Court.

The dispute in question centres over the question of who should prosecute the suspended Director of the National Prosecution Office (N.P.O.), Mauga Precious Chang. 

While the Office of the Attorney General has flown over New Zealand based lawyer, Satiu Simativa Perese, the National Prosecution Office has opted to acquire the services of former Attorney General, Taulapapa Brenda Heather-Latu to prosecute. A decision on the matter is pending.

But Tuilaepa saw the funny side.

“It’s not a hard matter to understand,” he said.

“Like I said before, let my children have their little scrap. But the issue is very simple and I will leave it like that…it will go and come back.”

Pressed to elaborate, Tuilaepa said: “One lawyer said to me I was not a lawyer.

“So I replied with a question. Which is the best? The person that makes laws for lawyers to abide by or the lawyer who tries to understand the law? 

“Which one is the best? 

“Moses who was given the commandments or the others that did wrong things?” 

Tuilaepa was also asked about who is paying for the lawyers prosecuting Mauga and the suspended Police Commissioner, Fuiavailiili Egon Keil. 

“It hasn’t come up,” Tuilaepa told the Samoa Observer. 

“That question hasn’t come up (yet).”

In the Supreme Court last week, two senior lawyers had indicated they were representing the Director of N.P.O.

One was Taulapapa Brenda Heather-Latu, who appeared on behalf of the N.P.O. and the other was New Zealand-based lawyer, Satiu Simativa Perese, who claimed to have been representing the Police.  

On the other hand is Su’a Helene Wallwork Lamb who appeared on behalf of the Attorney General’s Office and Acting Director of N.P.O. Muriel Lui representing the National Prosecution Office. 

A decision is pending.

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