Well how time flies. It feels like it was only this time last year we were welcoming regional and global leaders for the 48th Pacific Islands Forum Meeting and celebrating the 27th Annual Teuila Festival at the same time.
Every time Prime Minister, Dr Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, accuses someone of being an “idiot and a fool”, my mind winces and refuses to think. The reason, I suppose, is that over the years all that the insults had done was made the mind wonder whether Samoa was the right place to be.
Let’s talk about the Ombudsman Maiava Iulai Toma and his Office. They have become the latest public officials to call on the Government to slow down with the plan to bring back corporal punishment for disciplinary reasons.
The undeniable truth is this. The Samoa Rugby Union (S.R.U.) is caught between a rock and a hard place. That’s why it has no other option but to be dictated to by World Rugby. Poor Chief Executive Officer Faleomavaega Vincent Fepulea’i and his team have no other option. What other choice do they have?
We don’t pay enough attention to mental health issues. In Samoa, that is a fact. There are several contributing factors. Away from the fact the Government is still trying to come to terms with how to sort out the mess that is the health system, when it comes to mental health, top of the list in terms of challenges is the lack of qualified manpower, resources and finances. But the problems don’t stop there.
How times have changed. When it comes to the relationship between Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa’ilele Malielegaoi and his Fijian counterpart Frank Bainimarama, the transformation has been enormous. Today it is absolutely impossible to ignore.
Five Prime Ministers in five years. That’s an interesting statistic folks, whichever way you look at it. While it makes for some great headlines and one-liner jokes, from the perspective of an outsider looking in, the revolving door that is the Australian Prime Minister role is nothing but a bizarre game of musical chairs.
An interesting development in relation to the Criminal Libel Law emerged on Wednesday last week. A few months after Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa’ilele Malielegaoi and his administration expedited the re-introduction of the law that has become obsolete and erased from the law books of most civilized countries in the world, the Government has quickly moved to use it.
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen. Let me start by saying thank you very much for attending tonight’s celebrations. I want you to know that what we’re celebrating was born from the most unlikeliest of places, which is why it is a special honour for me. In other words, it was conceived and inspired by events that took place far away when I was a young man.
The commemoration of the Samoa Observer News Group’s 40th birthday this weekend is a timely reminder about the importance of press freedom. It goes without saying that without press freedom, it would be impossible for a newspaper like the Samoa Observer to operate, and do so with liberty to ask questions of the leaders our readers want answered.
Well here we are ladies and gentlemen. Today is a very special day in the life of the Samoa Observer News Group. As you would have seen from the front page of the edition you are reading, your newspaper has turned 40 years old. It calls for a time of celebration.
It’s undeniable that the Government has copped a lot of flak over its catch cry about accountability, transparency and good governance. More often than not, critics of Prime Minister Tuilaepa’s administration have taken the Government to task over their perceived failure to walk the talk and deliver on their promise to be transparent and accountable.
And so once more, the Controller and Chief Auditor, Fuimaono Camillo Afele, has made some pretty alarming discoveries in his latest report to Parliament to have been made public. The report to Parliament for the financial years 2013 and 2014 paints quite a grim picture of wrongdoing, abuse of power and misuse of taxpayers monies in the public service.
There is no doubt about it. Thrill seekers love the popular To Sua Trench. And why not? There is something magical and mystical about the place. Which is easy to understand why it is on many people’s bucket lists.
The Controller and Chief Auditor, Fuimaono Camillo Afele, uncovered a couple of rather interesting developments in his report to Parliament for the financial years 2013 and 2014. We accept the incidents highlighted took place six years ago and that things might well be different now which we hope is the case.
An innocent and hard working member of the community was brutally beaten in Apia last week. David Main was going about his business, as any ordinary member of the community would do, when two men dragged him out of his vehicle, beat him and left him for dead in front of the old Chan Mow supermarket before they took off in his vehicle.
Whenever we think of the humble plantation we immediately conjure up images of the trusty sapelu (machete), gumboots (if you have some), pea ato (baskets woven from coconut fronds), amo and the weed eater.
For such a small country, the number of inquiries and investigations launched into claims of wrongdoing on a regular basis really does boggle the mind sometimes.
Last week when Pacific leaders gathered in Samoa for the Pacific Island Forum’s Foreign Ministers meeting, some interesting points were raised by a couple of leaders in relation to an issue that affects many small island countries all over the world.
The Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Lopao’o Natanielu Mua, is correct. He cannot please everyone all the time. But then someone should remind him that he is not occupying that office for the sake of pleasing people, he is there to do the right thing by all the people of this country, not just a few. All the time.
Dear Editor, We took a group of visitors from overseas on a sightseeing tour of Upolu on Friday a week ago. Our visitors had been here for a week on business and were to leave that weekend. We started out from Apia and took the road that runs through the Aleisa farmlands, then Lefaga (without diverting to the coast), then Safata, Siumu, Falealili with a stop at Aga Hotel for lunch.
Should the 2019 Miss Samoa Pageant and Teuila Festival be held in Savaii? Reporter Adel Fruean travelled to Savai’i to cover the pageant and also had the chance to speak to locals on what they thought of Samoa’s two premier events.
Think a minute…A four-year-old girl was terribly hurt in a car accident and going to die—unless the doctors quickly found a person with her same rare blood type who was willing to give her their blood. Then they discovered the girl’s seven-year-old brother had the same blood type as her.
The tirade by NZ radio 1ZB commentator Heather du Plessis against the Pacific Islands has rightly invited adverse comment, only a small part of which has filtered to us in Samoa I suspect.
An S.O.S. visit to Facebook? The public surely appreciates the transparency shown by the Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Afamasaga Rico Tupai and the Attorney General, Lemalu Hermann Retzlaff, when they posted pictures of themselves recently outside the headquarters of Facebook in Silicon Valley in America.
The spears flew towards the youth on the hill, whistling as they cut through the air. Grinning, Queen Medb’s general drew his sword, eager to take back to his Queen the head of this warrior whom they called the Hound of Ulster. He had no doubt his spears would find their mark.
© Samoa Observer 2016
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