P.M. says democracy is alive and well

The outcome of the vote on a motion by the Government to terminate the services of the Lands and Titles Court President, Fepulea'i Atilla Ropati, shows that democracy is alive and well in Samoa.   

That's the opinion of Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, after the motion he moved, was defeated in Parliament. 

Twenty one Members of Parliament voted for the motion, another 18 voted against it, opting instead to reinstate Fepuleai.

The outcome of the vote did not meet the two-thirds majority required under Samoa's Constitution to terminate Fepulea’i's services.

Following the vote, the Prime Minister took the floor and said that democracy is alive and well in the governing of Samoa. 

“It is not easy to accept the result of today’s election," he said. 

"But that is democracy for you and democracy is the foundation of this Government. We have followed the process to fulfil the requirements under the Constitution."

Emphasising that the outcome of the vote is a reflection of Parliament fulfilling the requirements of the law, the Prime Minister said “only God can pass judgement”.

The vote by the MPs on the recommendations put forward by the Special Parliamentary Committee is a first for Samoa’s Parliament, added the P.M.

“We have our differences. As you have heard the motion by the Government, that is where we stand, with the belief that should’ve been the case. However, Parliament has voted and that is the result.” 

Tuilaepa then advised Parliament that there will be amendments to the Constitution as a result of the matter. 

“The Constitution is silent on certain things. The only aspect that’s outlined in the Constitution is the termination of the service for the Judge – the question is what is next – there are loopholes in this specific Constitution.”

"As the Samoan proverb says, everything happens for a reason, so we can do better."

Under Article 68(5) of the Samoa Constitution, a judge of the Supreme Court shall not be removed from Office, except by the Head of State on an address of the Legislative Assembly carried by not less than two-thirds of the total number of Members of Parliament (including vacancies).

The results of Tuesday’s historical vote is as follows. 

Those who voted to terminate the service of the President of the L.T.C.

Tuilaepa Dr Sa'ilele Malielegaoi - Lepa

Fiame Naomi Mata’afa – Lotofaga 

Tuitama Dr Leao Tuitama – A’ana Alofi Nu.1 East

Sala Fata Pinati - Gagaemauga Nu. 1 

Papali’itele Niko Lee Hang - Urban East 

Faimalotoa Kika Stowers - Gagaifomauga Nu. 1

Sili Epa Tuioti - Faasaleleaga Nu. 1 East 

Loau Solamalemalo Keneti - Sagaga le Falefa

Afamasaga Rico Tupai - Aana Alofi Nu. 3

Laaulialemalietoa Lueatea Schmidt - Gagaifomauga Nu. 3

Afoa Amituana’I Mauli - Alataua West - 

To’omata Aki Tuipea - Salega West

Fonotoe Lauofo Meredith- Anoamaa West

Taefu Lemi - Falelatai & Samatau 

Amituanai Kenrick Samu - Aleipata Itupa i Luga

Seiuli Ueligatone Seiuli - Sagaga le Usoga 

Faasootauloa Pati Taulapapa -  Gagaemauga No. 2

 Foleni Lio Tama Galu -   Faasaleleaga Nu. 3

Lenatai Victor Tamapua - Vaimauga Sisifo Nu.1, 

Faalogo Iosefa Sopi – Siumu

Faumuina Leaitunu’u Wayne Fong - Urban West

Those M.P.s who voted to reinstate Fepulea’i: 

Faaolesa Katopau Ainu’u – Vaimuaga West Nu.2

Tialavea  Tionisio Hunt – Va’a o Fonoti

Tapusatale Maukeni Esera – Vaisigano Nu.2

Galotoaifaana Amataga Alesana-Gidlow - Faasaleleaga Nu. 1

Tafua Maluelue Tafua - Aleipata Itupa i Lalo

Faumuina Tiatia Liuga - Palauli le Falefa

Aeau Peniamina – Falealupo 

Tuifa'asisina Misa Palemene - Palauli Sasae

Salausa Dr. John Ah Ching –Faleata East

Mulipola Leitaua Laki - Aiga i le Tai

Sooalo Mene - Gagaifomauga Nu. 2

Lealailepule Aiafi Rimoni - Faleata West 

Sulamanaia Tauili’ili Tuivasa – Vaimauga East

Fuimaono Teo Samuelu - Falealili East

Leaana Ronnie Posini – Safata West

Aumua Isaia Lameko –Falealili West

Toleafoa Ken Poutoa - Lefaga & Faleseela 

Nafoitoa Talaimanu Keti   - Gagaemauga No.3

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