Cabinet defers decision on Regulator's sacking

By Joyetter Feagaimaali'i 22 May 2020, 9:00AM

Cabinet is yet to decide on a recommendation made by the Public Service Commission to terminate the services of the Regulator, Lefaoalii Unutoa Auelua-Fonoti, says Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa'ilele Malielegaoi.

The Prime Minister also took aim at the Samoa Observer for publishing a confidential report and “recommendations” before they had been ratified by the Cabinet, actions by this newspaper which he said he found "saddening".

“I have spoken about this many times, they have publicised submissions and yet the final decision has not been dealt with,” said Tuilaepa after a Cabinet meeting on Thursday.

On Wednesday, the Samoa Observer published that Cabinet was to convene on that day to vote on whether to follow a recommendation from the Commission to terminate the services of the national Regulator.

Lefaoali’i is alleged to have violated the Public Service Code of Conduct for Chief Executive Officers by the Public Service Commission (P.S.C.). 

In his view, the Prime Minister said the Samoa Observer reporting the contents of a confidential Government report and its recommendations was “inciting hate”. 

“And it is clear in the Bible in the Book of Proverbs there are six sins that God derides and the seventh sin is the one he despises is inciting hatred and jealousy,” added Tuilaepa.

The alleged breaches by the Regulator were outlined in a confidential submission endorsed by a P.S.C. Member - Lauano Vaosa Epa - a copy of which was obtained by the Samoa Observer. 

"Based on the breach of the terms and conditions the Commission recommends the termination of the contract of employment forthwith,” the Commission wrote in a report first presented to the Cabinet last week.

The recommendation stems from an official complaint filed by the Regulator’s Secretary, Fialupe Uelese, of mistreatment and allegations that Lefaoali’i abused her authority.

Lefaoali’i declined to comment when contacted by the Samoa Observer over the phone on Tuesday. 

By Joyetter Feagaimaali'i 22 May 2020, 9:00AM

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