9 Mar 2011

Samoa NGO welcomes appointment of country's first female judge

12:14 pm on 9 March 2011

One of Samoa's most prominent lawyers was sworn in yesterday as the country's first female judge.

Mata Tuatagaloa Keli, replaces the former district court judge, Tauiliili Harry Schuster, who resigned early this year to run in the general election and won his seat.

Tuatagaloa has been in the legal profession since 1994 after graduating from New South Wales University.

The head of Samoa's victim support organisation, Lena Chan, says having a woman on the bench will be a good thing.

"I really believe that working together is a way of all coming together. I feel that Samoa should be a crime free country and if all of us women work together as a sisterhood and that would make a difference. We also felt that we have made a lot of difference in what we are do."

Lena Chan, the head of Samoa's victim support organisation.