Count me in, Olo stands up for Tautua

Salega East’s new Member of Parliament, Olo Fiti Vaai, has put his hand up to join the Tautua Samoa Party when Parliament begins. 

In doing so, he will become only its third member in Parliament.

The former Member of Parliament for Gagaemauga No. 2 switched constituencies and lost his seat at the end of the last Parliamentary sitting.

On Friday, however, Olo, who contested the election as an independent candidate, returned with a commanding victory over the former Salega East M.P, Tapuai Toese Ah Sam. 

Speaking to the Sunday Samoan yesterday, Olo said he was saddened by the fate of the Tautua Samoa Party who was annihilated by the H.R.P.P on Friday, winning with 44 seats to 2. 

But he said he would be happy to join the Tautua M.Ps, Aeau Peniamina Leavaise’eta from Falealupo and Ili Setefano Ta’ateo of Aana Alofi No. 2. 

“The saddest thing about the result of the elections is that there is no Opposition,” said Olo. 

“This is what I have been saying all along, that candidates should be looking out for the best interest of Parliament rather than the political parties.”

Olo said he has been approached many times to join the H.R.P.P.

“But I will not follow that trail simply because of the benefits and perks,” he said. “I will stand by my principles and follow my heart because I know I have all the weapons I need from God to do battle.”

Looking ahead, Olo said he would be happy to join the other two Tautua M.Ps and become the “third musketeer” to take on the government.   He said there is a need to educate members of the public about the important role of the opposition party in a democracy.

As a former Tautua M.P, he recalled that many members of the public had criticised their stance on a number of issues.

 “They had complained about the opposition then and now they have voted out most of the Opposition members,” he said. 

“It is a concern because the situation we have now is whatever the government wants, they will do it without hesitation and without any opposition. 

“There is nothing that anyone can do. The country has spoken and if this is what they wanted, then they really have to be tolerant with what the government will do without complaining.”  

Olo paid tribute to the former leader of the Tautua Samoa, Palusalue Fa’apo II.

He also congratulated Tuilaepa and the H.R.P.P for their resounding victory.

As for their expected sparring in Parliament, Olo said some rules must be established.

 “What I want to say to them is don’t all come at once,” said Olo. “They can come one by one and we will take them from there on.”

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