4 May 2005

American Samoa's House of Representatives votes to dump territorial auditor

1:57 pm on 4 May 2005

American Samoa's House of Representatives has approved the Governor's motion to dump the territorial auditor, George Webster.

16 members of the House voted to end his contract, with one member opposed.

The vote followed yesterday's senate vote to cut Mr Webster's contract by two years.

Vince Iuli, a spokesman for Governor Togiola Tulafono, says the termination is now official.

"This is one process he can't appeal. We will be re-advertising the position of auditor as required by the statutes of the territory of American Samoa."

Vince Iuli, a spokesperson for American Samoa's governor.

The sacking follows attempts by Mr Webster's office to audit various government agencies, some of which were reluctant to co-operate or impeded the audit office's efforts.

The territorial audit office had been given a negative peer review by the Association of Pacific Island Auditors but Mr Webster has said previously that the government refused requests to strengthen the office's power and independence .