Ale returns under F.A.S.T. banner

By Matai'a Lanuola Tusani T - Ah Tong 18 September 2023, 7:30PM

The re-elected Faleata No. 4 M.P. Ale Vena Ale says he is happy with the by-election results and at being given another chance to continue his service for his district and country.

Ale and his two candidate colleagues Mau’u Siaosi Puepuemai (Vaa o Fonoti) and Tuu’u Anasi’i Leota (Siumu) took commanding leads when the ballots from last Friday’s three by-elections were counted, which guarantees their return to their seats in the Legislative Assembly. 

Their decision to resign from the Human Rights Protection Party (H.R.P.P.) led to the vacation of their seat with the conclusion of the electoral process last weekend now seeing them return as Fa’atuatua ile Atua Samoa ua Tasi (F.A.S.T.) members. 

Ale thanked his constituency and F.A.S.T. supporters for their continuous support which has not changed even after he switched to the ruling party. 

He said he is thankful his district has asked to give him their vote of confidence so he can push for the development of the Faleata No. 4 constituency. The re-elected M.P. also acknowledged his only opponent and independent candidate, Ulu Bismarck Crawley. 

Mau’u on the other hand could not provide an immediate comment because he was on his way to New Zealand and will return next week. While the re-elected M.P. for Siumu, Tuu’u Anasii said he was at a funeral and will make contact when he is available. 

The results from last Friday’s by-elections boosted the number of elected representatives for the F.A.S.T. administration from 32 to 35 giving the party a two-third majority. While the Opposition party H.R.P.P. have had its seats in parliament reduced from 21 to 18 members. 

However, the re-elected F.A.S.T. M.P.s still have one more hurdle to go through, before they are guaranteed their seats for the remainder of the current parliamentary term. That is if there is no petition filed by their political opponents. 

The current electoral law allows for those who hold half or more than the winner’s votes to lodge a petition against them. Mau’u has secured his seat for the remainder of the current parliamentary term with second-placed candidate, Leausa Dr. Take Naseri winning 226 votes versus the re-elected M.P. collecting 772. 

The results for Vaa o Fonoti confirm that Leausa didn’t earn enough votes or half of Mau’u’s votes that would allow him to challenge him in a petition. Ale and Tuu’u's second-placed rivals did meet half of their votes and their win could be subjected to a petition should they decide to pursue the matter in the election petition court. 

By Matai'a Lanuola Tusani T - Ah Tong 18 September 2023, 7:30PM
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