26 Feb 2013

Samoa village leader says he was never consulted over land for casino

11:27 am on 26 February 2013

A Samoan pulenu'u says he wasn't consulted about the governments plan to allow a Chinese company to build a casino on 500 acres of land in their village.

The mayor of Mulivai, Safata told the Samoa Observer paper, he remains baffled as to how such a plan could gain momentum without consultation with the village council.

Tafa Aukusitino said he only heard about the casino after watching television, but says he was happy about the prospect of jobs.

He says the vacant land lot earmarked for the development belongs to the Catholic church.

The Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, earlier said the Chinese company had met with the village, and they had agreed.

The Exhibition Tourism Group, or ETG, from China has a casino license for their proposed hotel resort casino development, to be built within three years.