M.P.'s lack of fear, ego eulogised
A celebration of the life of former Minister and Member of Parliament Unasa Mesi Galo was held yesterday; he was remembered for his directness, championing and fighting for his constituents.
He was a former Member of Parliament for the Fa'asaleleaga No.3 district and was also the Minister of Justice, Court and Administration from 2007-2011.
Unasa, who also held the title Namulau'ulu, succumbed to cancer on the 27th of October 2019. He was 80 years old.
His last service was held at the E.F.I.S Church at the village of Fogapoa before he was laid to rest at his home at Siufaga.
Ministers and Members of Parliament were among those who came to pay their respects.
The Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Lopaoo Natanielu Mua paid tribute and acknowledged Unasa's service to the Government of Samoa.
He gave the eulogy on behalf of the Government.
Lopao'o described Unasa as a fearless person who was very straightforward and spoke his mind.
"The Prime Minister wanted me to tell all of you present here today that Unasa was a strong supporter of the Government's policies during his time in Parliament," said Lopaoo.
"He was a very loyal and committed person."
Unasa first entered Parliament in 1996, said Lopaoo. He became a successful candidate for his constituency again 2001-2006 and from 2006-2011.
Lopaoo recalls the time where Unasa delivered his maiden speech when he first entered Parliament.
"He spoke with courage and submitted some of the issues that were faced by his constituency to Parliament. This included water supply, telephones and agriculture," Lopaoo said.
"From the time he entered Parliament, Unasa made a strong plea to fix these services for the people of his constituency.
"I also remember when he made a request for the Tuasivi hospital to be fixed. In Unasa's words, a sty was better than some of the rooms of the hospital at the time.
"All those issues were considered by Parliament and the constituency are now enjoying these services which Unasa tried so hard to get it fixed."
Member of Parliament for Fa'asaleleaga No.2, Namulauulu Sami Leota, said his uncle Unasa was an inspirational man.
He described his late uncle as a loving, strong-willed, a family man, simple and very outgoing.
"Unasa was an inspiration to me," Namulauulu said.
"It was the way that he carried himself and how he lived life that inspired me and so many that were fortunate to cross paths with him.
"Unasa, despite his honorific titles and positions in Parliament back in the days treated everyone equally.
"Despite his duties and responsibilities, he always made time to chat and chill with his nieces and nephews, his family and the young men in the village.
"Unasa isn't like other typical politicians who abandon their normal life in the village once they become successful. No! In fact, you would never know he was a Minister because whenever he visited his home, he act like a normal matai.
"As a matter of fact, he helped me prepare for the election. When i told him i was going to run to become a Member of Parliament, his words to me was: "Love the people and love your family"
According to Namulauulu, Unasa's home was where his heart was.
"He established with his children a good business in New Zealand that had branches in the Philippines and Papua New Guinea. He had a good and successful life in New Zealand," Namulauulu said.
"However, he left all the riches and come back home to serve his family and his people.
"Even up to the time where he was bed-ridden and was battling cancer.
"He could've easily approached the Government and asked to be sent to New Zealand for treatment.
"However, he refused to go overseas and trusted the local doctors to take care of him."
Unasa was stubborn as well, said Namulauulu.
"When I visited him at the hospital; the doctor told him that my uncle was a very hard patient.
"I asked him what he meant, and the doctor said Unasa refused to take his medication.
"That was the kind of person he was, once he set his mind on something, nothing can ever make him change his mind."
Unasa is survived by his wife, Nola Williams and their six children.