31 Dec 2004

American Samoa journalist sees lack of will for corruption drive

4:11 pm on 31 December 2004

A journalist in American Samoa says there are doubts that any new committee set up by the territory's new Parliament to uncover government corruption will have the necessary muscle.

The high-profile Senate Select Investigative Committee is ending its work on December the 31st, with a final report due out within weeks.

Many members of the outgoing committee have not been returned to their Senate seats, and it is not clear whether the new Legislature will decide to continue with the committee.

Pago Pago based journalist Monica Miller says even if the committee is continued, it may lack political will to follow the example of the outgoing committee, headed by Senator Lualemaga Faoa.

"I think there will be difficulty because of the fact that most of the senators who have been selected by their districts are very strong supporters of the current administration, and there may not be the will to probe into some of the things that this Government will be engaging in, as it was over the last two years. because I don't think ever before in the history of the legislature have we had a committee that was so strong and uncovered so much corruption in high places in government."

Monica Miller.