19 Mar 2005

Samoa Opposition queries Apia hospital plan

8:42 am on 19 March 2005

The Opposition in Samoa has questioned a proposed hospital to be built in the capital.

The secretary of the Samoa Democratic United Party, Su'a Atonio, has told a news conference he is questioning the mental soundness of the health minister, Mulitalo Siafausa.

Su'a says millions of dollars will go to what he calls a new and unnecessary hospital at a time when doctors and other medical staff are asking for pay rises.

The MP says the national hospital at Moto'otua, is already sufficiently close to the centre of the capital Apia.

The Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele has defended his minister of health.

Tuilaepa says the new hospital will deal with non-emergency cases, and will be closer to the centre of Apia than the existing national hospital.