17 Feb 2011

Samoa election candidates in court over village mayors not endorsing them

1:55 pm on 17 February 2011

The Supreme Court in Samoa will hear tomorrow an urgent case brought by five election candidates against the electoral commissioner and his office for not accepting their nominations as candidates for next month's general election.

Four of them are members of the opposition Tautua Samoa party and includes a matai of Saleapaga village, Tuula Kiliri Lafi, who plans to stand against the leader of the ruling HRPP party and the caretaker Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi.

Tuula's case is over the mayor of Saleapaga not confirming his service, or monotaga, in the village to enable him to register as a candidate.

Another Tautua Samoa party candidate, I'aulualo Taulafoga, has been banished from his village of Fa'ala Palauli on Savaii for not accepting the village council's decision to have a single candidate standing - a member of the HRPP.

I'aulualo's declaration form has also not being signed off by the pulenuu or village mayor.

The registration of candidates for the March 4th election close at noon on Friday.