Peseta to run unopposed

Peseta Vaifou Tevagaena will run unopposed for the Fa’asaleleaga No. 5 seat ahead of the 21 May snap election, a candidate list from the Office of the Electoral Commissioner (O.E.C.) has confirmed. 

The list from the O.E.C. released on Friday afternoon showed that the senior member of the Human Rights Protection Party (H.R.P.P.) will now join three other candidates who also ran unopposed in the April General Election.

They include the caretaker Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi, the former Deputy Prime Minister, Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, and the Associate Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Lealailepule Rimoni Aiafi.

Peseta's guaranteed passage to Parliament follows the withdrawal of candidacy from two other H.R.P.P. candidates from the political race: Matafeo Reupena Matafeo and Vui Laniselota Lameko.

There will be no new candidates allowed to nominate for the 21 May snap election; candidates may only withdraw. 

Peseta was one of only four H.R.P.P. candidates to claim seats in Savai’i after the April General Election along with Faimalotoa Kika Stowers-Ah Kau from Gagaifomauga No. 1, Leota Aeau Tima Leavai from Falealupo and Lautafi Fio Purcell from Satupaitea.

The seat of Faasaleleaga No. 5 was also an H.R.P.P. secured seat in the April General Election following the inability of Deputy Leader of the Samoa National Democratic Party (S.N.D.P.), Vui Seinafolava Masinamua to nominate. 

On Tuesday, Head of State, His Highness Tuimaleali’ifano Sualauvi Va’aletoa II declared the April General Elections void, calling on fresh elections by 21 May 2021.  

Tuimalealiifano says he has observed events that followed the April 9 General Elections, after a 26-seat deadlock between the Human Rights Protection Party (H.R.P.P.) and Faatuatua i le Atua Samoa ua Tasi (F.A.S.T.) party prolonged the forming of the next government for the XVII Parliamentary term.

The declaration is being challenged in court Faatuatua i le Atua Samoa ua Tasi (F.A.S.T.) party and was mentioned on Friday at 3 pm before the Supreme Court.

F.A.S.T.’s leader, Fiame, said the party would not accept that the only solution to the deadlock in Parliament following the 9 April election was to return to the polls. 

The basis for the case is the order breaches the law and constitution.

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