18 Mar 2014

Report on Samoa prison delayed another two weeks

5:30 am on 18 March 2014

A report into abuse of power at a Samoan prison are due to be released this week, but the Minister of Police and Prisons says there's a two-week delay.

The Commission of Inquiry into Tafa'igata Prison responded to claims of loans between prisoners and police officers and sexual misconduct between them.

Alex Perrottet reports.

Earlier this month the Samoa Observer reported the Commission's report had been sent to the office of the Prime Minister. The government had suspended the Police Commissioner, Lilomaiava Fou Taioalo, and the prison warden and Assistant Commissioner, Sala Seaga Uili, with pay, and extended the suspension in January, after the inquiry was delayed. The assisting police commissioner and spokesperson, Fauono Talalelei Tapu, took over until the end of the commissioner's suspension in March, and the Minister of Police and Prisons, Sala Fata Pinati says Fauono will remain in the job until the findings are released. Last month, the Government called for applications for a commissioner of the newly-established prisons and correction service, which effectively removes the running of prisons from the Ministry of Police. Sala Fata Pinati says the report on the prison is now back with the police and the findings will be made public in two week's time.