15 Mar 2006

Samoa opposition concurs with US view of Samoa being one-party state

7:47 pm on 15 March 2006

The deputy leader of the opposition Samoa Democratic Party, Asiata Saleimoa Vaai, says he agrees with the view of the US State Department that Samoa is a one-party state.

Asiata has told the Samoa Observer that being labelled a one-party state will damage Samoa's reputation as a democratic country.

The US report on Samoa said in April Samoa became a one-party state because the Speaker of the House ruled that the opposition Samoa Democratic United Party, the SDUP, could not be recognised as a political party.

The US report also pointed to detriorating prison conditions for inmates, unfair parliamentary proceedings, violence against women and children, and discrimination against women and non-matai.