P.M.'s plan for rebel M.P.s undemocratic

The Chairman of the Fa'atuatua i le Atua Samoa ua Tasi (F.A.S.T.) party, Laaulialemalietoa Leautea Schmidt, believes the Prime Minister's plan to "close loopholes" in legislation designed to stop M.P.s from crossing the floor and leaving their political parties is the ultimate admission that not all is well in the party.

In fact, La'aulialemalietoa, who is a former Speaker of the House claims that such a call indicates "that there is no more democracy" in Samoa.

Tuilaepa's plan comes in the aftermath of Deputy Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mata’afa resigning from Cabinet and the Human Rights Protection Party (H.R.P.P). Prior to that, two other members of the party in Laaulialemalietoa and Faumuina Wayne Fong found themselves out of favour and eventually out of the party.

But La'auli said Tuilaepa's plan is political and he "is trying his best to protect the party, not the human right of the people.

"That is what he is doing," La'auli said.  "He is more scared of people walking out of the party. All he thinks of is winning and how H.R.P.P. will be winning continuously.  But he does not care about the rights of the members."

La'auli believes that it is unfair to tie-down members within a party, even if they are unhappy with how things are done at the party. 

"I can't stay at the party if I see that the party is not in the position it used to be, and why it was formed," Laauli said. 

"So even if the members see all the dirty works of others, are they just going to sit there and do nothing? That's why I left. I saw that the party was going in the wrong direction and was only protecting those who are doing all the dirty works and earning money from the party. 

"And now, he is saying that if you are unhappy about something and voice it out, then you leave the party and have a by-election? He can not do that. So if what he is saying is true, that they will block this loophole, it will mean that they are now going to tie up the hands and feet of the members, and also blindfold them and hold them down.

"This indicates that there is no more democracy."

 La'auli liked what the Prime Minister is doing to "communism."

"The law says that if you leave a party, you will have to become Independent," he said. 

"But now they are saying they are looking at blocking that, and say that whatever reason who choose to walk out, you would have to go and do a by-election."

According to La'auli, the government and the P.M. should stick to the legislation they have now. 

"There's always a way, if you are unhappy, you can leave the party then become an Independent Member, until the end of the term. 

"That's how I went out. I was not happy, then I went out and became Independent. 

"But when I went out to form a party, then I resigned. I didn't resign because of the report, I resigned so I can form a party. 

"The question is, who is going to pay for (those) by-elections? It's us! The people. 

"They just want to continue holding the power and authority in his hand.

"It is not the right, it's not the right way we should focus on. Samoan politics is supposed to be free and pure democracy to give people the opportunity not only to protect the human rights of the people but also with the government."

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