Director changes for all but three public boards

All of Samoa’s public bodies, except the Gambling Control Authority, Samoa Airways and the Samoa Ports Authority, have undergone changes to their boards of directors.

The Ministry of Public Enterprises confirmed the changes in a statement posted to its website: 

“The total number of Directors serving on the Boards of Public Bodies is 131,” the Ministry said in a statement. 

“This is down from 181 as of the 30th November 2019.” 

The Ministry oversees the operation and functions of the State Owned Enterprises. 

Last year, in a December 2 meeting, the Cabinet appointed 92 individuals to serve as Public Body Board Directors. 

“From this number, 38 have been appointed as Directors for the first time while the remaining 54 are re-appointments,” the statement said. 

In January 2020 Parliament passed the Miscellaneous (Boards of Public Bodies) Amendment Act 2020 which led to a reduction in the number of Directors on Boards from seven to a minimum of three and not more than five.

This followed an extensive review of the composition of Boards that resulted in changes to the technical competencies and experience required by Board Directors.

“This followed an extensive review of the needs of the public body [also known as a State Owned Enterprise], the services they provided and Government’s national vision of what it expects its public bodies to contribute to national development,” the Ministry of Public Enterprises', Chief Executive Officer (C.E.O.), Elita To’oala had earlier told the Samoa Observer about the reduction to position numbers. 

Of the 131 Board Directors, there are 34 female directors; 97 male directors. The number of women board representatives increased slightly, by two percentage points, according to figures provided by the Ministry. 

“There are six boards with new Chairpersons,” the Ministry said. 

“They are Samoa Shipping Corporation, Samoa Water Authority, Samoa International Finance Authority, Samoa Life Assurance Corporation, Samoa Sports Facilities Authority and Samoa Tourism Authority.” 

Last month Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Public Enterprises, Elita To’oala said a cut to the number of directors serving on public boards by 52 is estimated to save the public purse $234,000 a year.

Furthermore the statement says Letters of Offers have been sent to each appointee and the Office of the Attorney General is preparing the Warrants of Appointments to be signed by the Head of State: “Once this is completed a full list of Director Appointments will be uploaded.” 

Earlier this year the Samoa Observer printed the full list of the Board of Directors already approved by Cabinet. 


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