16 Jul 2008

American Samoa senate president lists territory's challenges

3:29 pm on 16 July 2008

American Samoa's Senate President, Lolo Letalu Moliga, says the three major challenges facing the territory are improving the economy, controlling immigration and easing the financial burdens and hardships stemming from faalavelave or traditional family obligations.

Lolo says it is necessary to review how cultural obligations and the demands of the matai and heads of families are affecting residents.

He says people are enslaved by their obligations to family and village and leaders have to look for ways to lighten this burden.

On immigration, he says American Samoa has become a haven for those looking for economic opportunities, and this has threatened the territory's limited resources.

He asks what will be left for the children of American Samoa if those in power continue to let foreigners into the territory.

The Senate President says it's imperative that American Samoa search for opportunities to develop its economy and equip itself for difficult economic times.