Head of State or Governor General?

17 November 2017, 12:00AM

Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi’s government has moved to amend the Constitution once more in relation to the position of the Head of State. But the change has given rise to suggestions that since anyone is now eligible to become the Head of State, is it not time to consider changing the title from Head of State to Governor General. What do you think? Ioana Tupa’i asked in today’s Street Talk and this is what people said:


Asafo Keti, Salani Falealili 

The government has made so many changes in relation to this role. I do not support calling our Head of State a Governor General. 

Governor General is how the American Samoa people call their head of government but for us we should never use that term for our Head of State. Given the ranking of the position, we should respect it by continuing to appoint the Tama Aiga title holders to the role.


Michael Tamanikaiyoroi, Aleisa

I don’t support the suggestion to use Governor General. I prefer the Head of State, it is more stately and demands more honour. Looking back at history, no one was eligible before unless you hold a tama aiga title. It should stay that way.


Talimalama Tenari, Salesātele Falealili

I do not understand why such changes have been made to the Head of State’s role. I don’t mind calling it Governor General because that reflects there is no more honour given to the title. I don’t understand why the government keeps changing things. It was okay before and there was no problem, why change it?


Lemanaia Simone, Luatuanuú

Looking at the number of changes they have made in relation to the Head of State, I agree they might as well call him Governor General. I’m sad because the integrity of the role has been badly affected. I’m of the belief that only Tama Aiga titleholders should qualify. Otherwise if they have changed, they should change it completely then.


Foutanu Maiai, Saoluafata 

It’s sad because in my view, there is no honour that comes with the Head of State and that is largely due to the many changes that have been done to it. It has become just another political appointment which is not how it was. The Head of State has always been above politics but now they are talking about limiting the terms, why don’t they do the same for political positions then? I also agree that if they have changed the laws so much, they might as well call it a Governor General.


Aitasi Ugapō Aumua, Manunu

There is merit to the argument that the title should be changed. I listened on the radio, see on television and read in newspapers that a lot of the changes have been brought forward. So to me, if they have changed it to the point where the original Constitution can hardly be recognised anymore, they should change it completely then. Otherwise, I strong urge the government to go back to the beginning when only Tama Aiga title holders can qualify.


Ene Taliaoa, Vaitele-uta

We have just elected a new Head of State and now these changes? In my view, why don’t we just change everything and not to use the Head of State title anymore but call it the Governor General. Before there was so much respect and honour for the role but now a lot of amendments have been made to the Constitution that has made the role barely recognizable. The foundation has been changed and it’s very sad. The question is, are these changes necessary? I guess time will tell.


17 November 2017, 12:00AM

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