Roads, water dominate requests for Minister of Works
Road works and water supply dominated requests raised by Members of Parliament in relation to the Ministry of Works, Transport and Infrastructure.
Minister of M.W.T.I, Papali’i Niko Lee Hang, revealed this in Parliament on Monday, when he spoke in response to matters raised during the Budget debate.
Papali'i's portfolio covers the Samoa Shipping Corporation, Pacific Forum Line, Ministry of Works, Planning and Urban Management Agency, Samoa Ports Authority, Samoa Water Authority, Samoa Shipping Services, Land and Transport Authority and Samoa Airport Authority.
In Parliament, Papali’i said a total of $4 million is reserved for Community Service Obligation (C.S.O.) and $11.4 million for capital works.
He noted that $6 million has been appropriated to implement operations for the financial year.
Papali’i touched on some of the major construction projects such as the ford in Moamoa to be completed in October 2020, West Coast road to the Faleolo airport to be completed in August 2020.
The new bridge at Vaisigano is expected to be completed in August this year and the S.S.C. is negotiating with a company for another vessel for Savai’i .
Road construction for Patamea is underway and water supply for Lotofaga, Aleisa, Faleasiu will be launched next week.
The Minister also spoke about the request to have free ferry ticket for Savai’i residents in the 2021 General Election so they can cast their vote from the big island. Papali’i said the company can negotiate in terms offering half price for tickets but a free ride would be something that only Cabinet can approve.
The M.P. for Aleipata itupa Lalo, Tafua Maluelue Tafua, interjected to raise his constituency’s request. He said the saying that what is good for the goose is good for the gander should also apply to those living on South East coast of Upolu.
Tafua asked that the Minister should consider a ferry to utilise the Satitoa Wharf, so people of his constituency can travel between Satitoa and Matautu easily.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi intervened to remind members that now is the time they can put forth requests before the Parliament sitting concludes. He said even those asking for bus fares and taxi fares for voters should voice those needs now to avoid last minute requests.
M.P. for Alataua East, Aliimalemanu Alofa Tuuau used the opportunity to ask for a bus to transport her constituents from Salelologa to the village.
When other M.Ps took the floor to make requests, Speaker of the House, Leaupepe Toleafoa Faafisi told the members that they had misinterpreted the statement from the Prime Minister.
Leaupepe said what the Prime Minister was actually saying was for Members to refrain from making silly requests.