Casualties confirmed, to victors go the spoils
The General Election results are official.
And five Cabinet Ministers have lost their seats in Parliament following last Friday’s General Elections. The Cabinet Ministers in the casualties list include:
• Minister of Women, Community and Social Development, Tolofuaivalelei Falemoe Leiataua
• Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Fa’amoetauloa Dr. Faale Tumalii
• Minister of Works, Transport and Infrastructure, Manualesagalala Enokati Posala
• Minister of Education, Sports and Culture, Magele Mauiliu Magele
• Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Tuisugaletaua Sofara Aveau.
The fate of the Cabinet Ministers were confirmed yesterday when the official result was released by the Acting Electoral Commissioner, Faimalomatumua Mathew Lemisio, in a public notice.
“I hereby give public notice declaring the results of the General Elections held on the 4th day of March 2016 to elect Members of Parliament to represent all constituencies,” the notice reads.
The final results are published on page 4 and 5 of this edition.
The result also confirmed the historical 50th Member of Parliament.
She is Faaulusau Rosa Duffy-Stowers who had the highest per cent of votes among women candidates. Faaulusau becomes the first M.P to enter Parliament using a clause enabled by the Constitutional amendment, requiring Parliament to have at least five women Members.
Back to the results, the biggest talking points are the high number of Cabinet Ministers ousted by newcomers and the high number of new members.
With 27 new Members of Parliament – excluding Olo Fiti Vaai who has returned representing a different constituency – 54 per cent of the Maota Fono are new members.
Among them is the Tautua Party member, Ili Ta’ateo Tafili, who ousted Tolofuaivalelei at Aana Alofi No. 2. The final results show that Ili won comfortably with 878 votes, compared to Tolofua’s 600.
Another newcomer, Nafoitoa Talaimanu Keti, has pulled off a stunning upset at Gagaemauga No. 3, overpowering Fa’amoetauloa. The former Police Assistant Commissioner came from behind to win with 838 votes compared to Faamoe’s 746 votes.
At Safata West, Leaana Ronnie Posini’s victory has been made official. Leaana defeated Manualesagalala and the leader of the Tautua Samoa Party, Palusalue Fa’apo II with 1020 votes. Palusalue polled 709 while Manualesagalala came last with 675 votes.
At Fa’asaleleaga No. 1 West, Magele has perhaps become a victim of the reshuffling of boundaries, which saw him up against Gatoloaifaana Amataga Gidlow who secured the seat with a resounding 893 votes.
The fifth Cabinet Minister to have been ousted is Tuisugaletaua who was defeated by Sulamanaia Tauiliili Tuivasa at Vaimauga East.
The result have also confirmed the outcome of the much talked about race between Sili Epa Tuioti and Pauli Ivan Williams at Fa’asaleleaga No. 1 East. Sili won by a mere six votes.
At Falealili West, contrary to the result announced after the preliminary count, Aumua Isaia Lameko, is set to resume his father’s role in Parliament by overcoming Associate Minister, Tusa Misi Tupuola. Aumua won with 744 votes.
With results now official, the period for Court petitions has now opened.
Sources told the Weekend Observer that its costs $20,000 to file a petition.
Parliament’s first session – where all new and old members will be sworn in – has been scheduled for next Friday.