1 Jun 2020

Former ruling HRPP MP to establish new political party in Samoa

4:08 pm on 1 June 2020

Samoa's former speaker and cabinet minister, La'auli Leuatea Polataivao Schmidt, is to establish a new political party to compete in next year's election.

La'auli announced his move after he accepted a call from his Gagaifomauga number 3 constituency to quit the ruling Human Rights and Protection Party.

The MP said more details would be announced at a later date.

Laauli speaking to reporters

Laauli speaking to reporters Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Tipi Autagavaia

This comes after weeks of La'auli refusing to accept party leader and Prime Minister Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi's statement that the MP was no longer a caucus member.

According to the Prime Minister, La'auli had breached party policy by not supporting a constitutional amendment for a new division of constituencies to be put in place in next year's general election.

La'auli apologised to Tuila'epa for any wrong doing he may have commited while he was a caucus member.

However La'auli also voiced deep concerns over the party he was was dear to him, his family and even his constituency.

He said since the Samoa became a one party state after the 2016 general election, the leader had ruled with one voice.

La'auli's late father was a founding member of the HRPP and former cabinet minister.

La'auli was first elected to parliament in 2006 and served as Speaker from 2011 to 2016.