So there we have it Samoa.
All’s well that ends well.
With the first unofficial count of yesterday’s General Elections done and dusted, giving us a fair idea of who will be in our next Parliamentary sitting, it’s time to take a collective breath of relief.
It’s been an arduous journey, a very long one for many candidates and their families. So give yourselves a pat on the back. It is not easy.
We know the journey up until now has taken years and months in terms of preparations.
For sure it would have cost thousands of their hard-earned money, it would’ve meant sacrifices had to be made in terms of family time and work commitments.
And let’s not forget the emotional, mental and physical toll on everyone involved. Think of the campaign trail, the challenges, the lies and the deception.
But there would have also been fun moments, triumphs and small victories worth reflecting upon.
Now speaking of victories, sadly not everyone can win. There can only be one winner in every constituency – whether that means 49 or 54.
As this piece was being compiled last night, early indications from the first unofficial count point to a number of upsets. The biggest one of them all is the leader of the Tautua Party, Palusalue Faapo II, being toppled.
Today, we are under no illusion whatsoever that our people will wake up to find that the ruling Human Rights Protection Party (H.R.P.P) has once more secured power by a massive margin.
But then we’ve known that all along. The election was a mere formality.
Indeed, in the build up to yesterday, there was never a time when there was a question about whether the H.R.P.P will come back. We knew they were far too strong and all indicators pointed to a landslide.
Anybody who thought that the Tautua Samoa Party stood a chance would have been akin to asking the sun to rise from the opposite direction it usually takes every morning.
But let’s not dump on the Tautua Party. We must never neglect their efforts and their bravery to take on such a well-oiled machine in the form of the H.R.P.P.
We’ve said all along that it takes courage to go against the government of today. And that’s precisely what the Tautua candidates did yesterday. What with all the perks and monies being offered by the government to lure all candidates to their side, who would say no to the H.R.P.P?
It’s such a vicious cycle.
So take a bow Palusalue Fa’apo II, Aeau Peniamina, Afualo Dr. Wood Salele, Lefau Harry Schuster, Papali’i Li’o Masipau, Aveau Niko Palamo, Toeolesulusulu Cedric Schuster and all your candidates. Don’t give up, there is always a next time.
On the other hand, we take this chance to congratulate Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi and all the members of the ruling H.R.P.P for yet another comprehensive victory. It’s a complete annihilation of the Tautua Samoa.
The result speaks volumes about the faith and trust that the people of Samoa have on the H.R.P.P. They are now set to rule this country for close to 40 years, which is unheard of.
What’s scary is that Samoa now does not have an opposition party. With the members of Parliament basically decided – barring election petitions and any other major changes in the official count – we are basically heading for a one-party state.
Away from that, the attention now turns to the H.R.P.P and how its leadership ranks will look.
But then that’s a story for tomorrow.
In the meantime, let’s celebrate with those candidates who have triumphed and let’s not forget that there are many more who are mourning.
Have a pleasant weekend Samoa, God bless!