Speaker reminds M.P.s about ethics, integrity
The Speaker of Parliament, Leaupepe Toleafoa Fa’afisi, delivered what appeared to be quick course on ethics, acceptable standards and the importance maintaining integrity for Members of Parliament on Tuesday.
Leaupepe made the point prior to the swearing in of Member of Parliament for Gagaifomauga No. 3, Laauli Leuatea Schmidt, who returned to the House yesterday after winning his constituency's by-election.
La'auli is a veteran Member of Parliament. He is a former Speaker of the House and a former Cabinet Minister under the H.R.P.P.
But before he was invited to take his oath, the Speaker had asked La'auli to rise and be upstanding while he reminded him about his responsibilities as a Member of Parliament.
The Speaker said M.Ps should carry out their duties and behave in accordance to ethics and principles under the Standing Orders.
“Each member should respect the law, and each member should respect each law in Samoa and protect the laws under the Constitution,” said Leaupepe. “Number three, respect for everyone.
“Each member should respect other members, the general public and appointed officers of the government and should work with respect and honesty without partiality especially honesty at all times.”
The Speaker also told Members that they are required to get their personal lives in order. Leaupepe added that members should carry out their duty with one goal and that should be for the betterment of the country. He discouraged them from being involved in dishonest deals.
Furthermore, he told Parliament that members should declare their business interests to "any uncertainty” when it comes to dealing public matters. The Speaker said these are required for all Parliamentarians to ensure they do not gain personally from their positions.
"A breach of this regulation will be investigated by the Ethics and Privilege Committee as recommended by Parliament,” Leaupepe cautioned.
Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi acknowledged the Speaker for reminding the members of the Legislative Assembly abot the rules that guide their work.
Tuilaepa said these are the rules that each Member should follow not only inside Parliament but also when they exit Parliament.
He said Members of Parliament should uphold the integrity of Parliament and have the highest respect for each other.