Eleven more Savai'i candidates sign up

Eleven more candidates from Savai'i have officially registered their names for next year's General Election with the Office of the Electoral Commissioner.

Of the new candidates, six signed up for the H.R.P.P., three for F.A.S.T., one for the Tautua Samoa Party and one independent candidate.

The number of new candidates has taken the total number of candidates from Savai'i who have already registered to 34. 

As of Wednesday evening, the H.R.P.P. and F.A.S.T. are equal with 16 candidates each.

This was confirmed by the Electoral Commissioner, Faimalomatumua Mathew Lemisio. 

Twenty-three candidates registered on the first day of nominations and only ten registered on Wednesday. 

Thursday is the last day for the nomination of candidates in Savai'i before the O.E.C. officials return to Uplolu on Friday.

"On Friday, we move back to Upolu and then open the office on Friday and Saturday and the rest of next week," Faimalo said in an interview with the Samoa Observer. 

This is the first time candidates from Savai'i are able to register on the big island. 

And the initiative according to Faimalo, has been well embraced by the candidates and residents of Savai'i. 

"We follow  that mantra of what's good in Upolu should also be good for Savai'i," Faimalo said.  "We want to make sure that it's convenient for our candidates coming from Savai'i. 

"You have to keep in mind that it isn't just the candidate who will be coming. They are usually accompanied by their supporters, and I hear from the other candidates that it is costly to bring them all to Upolu. 

"So that's why we came here, and so far it's been positive."

When the floor first opened up on Tuesday, there were quite a few issues O.E.C. encountered which prolonged the process of official registrations.  However, those were resolved on the second day of registrations. 

"We have picked up a couple of issues that we thought like I mentioned before about the immigration records," said Faimalo. 

"I think that has been resolved now, and we anticipate a higher number of candidates in Upolu, and I think by then our team will be well-prepared for that."

After the second day of nominations, Faimalo confirmed that only six female candidates have already registered. He could not reveal the names, however.

Faimalo says the official announcement of all the names for those running in the 2021 General Election will be held next Friday at 12 pm.

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