Opportunity for change driving Magele's election bid
Magele Sekati Fiaui says representing the Fa'atuatua i le Atua Samoa ua Tasi (F.A.S.T.) party by contesting the seat of Fa'asaleleaga II was a chance to achieve change that was to good to pass up.
The 35-year-old will challenge the seat’s current incumbent who is running for re-election; it is currently occupied by veteran Member of Parliament, Gatoloaifa’ana Amataga Alesana-Gidlow.
It will be Magele's first time standing for office.
Speaking to the Observer after he officially declared his candidacy with F.A.S.T. on Thursday, Magele said "opportunity" is something that does not come by often, which explains his eagerness to participate in the April race.
"Firstly, my village of Iva wanted someone to take part in the election," he said.
"Secondly, I was more than willing to get a chance to serve my constituency. And this is what prompted my candidacy, for the most part, to serve while I still have the strength and determination."
Magele is married with three children.
He says he will be advocating for three things should he win the Faasaleleaga II seat: better inland road works; improved education facilities; and resources for the development of sports.
Magele said that as the Government encourages families to invest in working their land and developing the agricultural sector, incentives are needed to achieve that goal.
"There is a great need for our road works going inland where family plantations are located, and families use cars nowadays," he said.
"What I mean is, you hardly see people walk far distances into their plantations anymore or horses. And with what I've noticed, especially the youth, they are so much more willing to work in the plantation when cars are there to take them.
"With better inland plantation roads, the better our agricultural developments will be as the strong and youthful are able to easily access plantations."
Secondly, Magele said enhancing facilities and resources used by district schools was a dire need.
He believes that better facilities will also bring better educational results.
"This is also an incentive for the teachers to work diligently on the progress of the students when she has the resources," he said.
Lastly, the F.A.S.T. candidate aims to provide more opportunities to the young people of Faasaleleaga II in the area of sports.
He nominated rugby as a particular priority.
"It's well known that our constituency has produced great players for Samoa in rugby and any other sport," he said
"Iva had Edward Park which is now used for soccer.
“We have no rugby field now but we need one and that's what I will be aiming to do for my constituency.
"Developing the relevant skill set of the youth this district is important, especially with some of the district boys who play for the Tolotolo Tamauli 7s Savai’i Rugby Team."
Asked why he chose to fly the flag for F.A.S.T. for his first election, Magele said that the values and principles reflected through the new political party's reflected his own.
Magele stands against the Government's push to make the Lands and Titles Courts autonomous through the three bills, Lands and Titles Bills 2020, Judicature Bill 2020 and the Constitutional Amendment Bill 2020.
"I do not support it. So I cannot go and stand from that side when I don't even support those proposed changes," he said.
And more broadly he believes in those who say a change of Government is necessary.