15 Nov 2006

Samoa Democratic United Party MPs become Independent MPs

9:41 am on 15 November 2006

The Samoa Democratic United Party is no longer recognized in parliament and all its seven MPs have become Independents.

The speaker, Tolofuaivalelei announced his ruling in parliament yesterday, after declaring that the SDUP did not have the required eight MPs to be officially recognized as a party and Opposition in the house.

Tolofuaivalelei told parliament his office has accepted the resignation of the former SDUP leader, Le Mamea Ropati and senior MP Sililoto Tolo Tuaifaiva, and both are now Independent MPs.

Meanwhile the Prime Minister, Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, in his ministerial address following the ruling says the request by SDUP for the standing orders to be amended was rejected by his HRPP party in a caucus meeting.

Tuila'epa says even though parliament now has no recognized Opposition party the Independent MPs can still play an important role in parliament