S.N.P.F to have Savai'i office
Samoa National Provident Fund (S.N.P.F) will soon have a state-of-the-art office complex in Savai'i.
Located at Salelologa near the market, the ground breaking ceremony was well attended by Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, Cabinet Ministers, Government officials and Savai'i residents.
The Prime Minister said the need for the S.N.P.F to have a Savai'i office is critical.
"The Samoa National Provident Fund was established some 48 years ago in 1972 when the Government saw the need for our people to have an avenue to save money for retirement," he said.
The Fund, according to Tuilaepa, has grown from humble beginnings to what it is today, which is a Provident Fund with assets exceeding T$815 million.
"However, there has been one thing that has been missing all along and that is the fact that S.N.P.F. has never, in its long history, owned an office of its own in Savai'i," he added.
"That is why, with Cabinet’s blessing, the Fund will be building a state-of-the-art office complex on this very land where we are gathering this morning."
Tuilaepa went on to say that once the work is completed, S.N.P.F will be "better equipped to serve our people in Savaii with their member contribution payments, withdrawals, loans’ applications and assist our senior citizens with their pensions and other benefits."
Cabinet awarded the building contract to Schwartz Construction company and the construction work is expected to be completed by January 2021.
"I look forward to being here, on this site again at that time to witness the finished product," said Tuilaepa.
The total cost of the project will be T$7,806,698.
Taotua Ioane Matamua, a High Chief (tu'ua) of the village of Salelologa, said the project is a "dream come true" for their village and the people of Savai'i.
"When we first heard about the plan to develop Salelologa into a township, we prayed that it would happen fast," said Taotua.
"The plan was initiated during Tofilau Luamanuvae Eti Alesana, and we thank the Government for keeping the promise and for his willingness to continue this project.
"To be honest, we are overwhelmed with excitement as we gather to witness the beginning of such a great project."
Taotua said in previous years, the people of Savai'i always have to travel to Upolu when dealing with serious or urgent matters at the S.N.P.F.
Now that they will have their own office at Salelologa, Taotua is optimistic that more good things will follow for the people of Savai'i.
"More of our people have also migrated and settled in Apia because there are not enough employment opportunities here on the island, and we believe that with these new developments, there will be more opportunities for our children in the future."