Samoa Land Corporation relocate from golf course
Samoa's Land Corporation is relocated today and its old premises will be turned into a hotel.
The staff of the Samoa Land Corporation are today set to move into new offices at the market in the Vaitele industrial zone.
This comes after a Government decision to sell their purpose built head office at the Tuanaimato golf course.
That building is now set to become a hotel in time for next year's Youth Commonwealth Games.
Our correspondent, Tipi Autagavaia, told Don Wiseman how this came about.
AUTAGAVAIA TIPI AUTAGAVAIA: There was a change in the chairmanship of the board of the Samoa Land Corporation with the newly-appointed minister now looking after state-owned enterprises, the SOEs, which includes the Samoan Land Corporation. The announcement came out that the multi-million dollar head office of the Corporation is now going to become a hotel. And all the staff and the head office of the Samoa Land Corporation is now sent to the Vaitele market in the industrial area.
DON WISEMAN: Is this move about perhaps government having closer control or being able to keep a better eye on the Land Corporation?
ATA: Well I think because of that control and chief auditor's report and its findings, the government is looking at trying to recover some of the monies for the Samoan Land Corporation. As re in the auditor's report, some of the money that was spent for the construction of the new office was not well spent. So I think it was a whole refurbishment of the corporation is to have that head office turned into a hotel, move the head office to the Vaitele industrial market and give it a go, see how it goes.
DW: Okay, and as far as a hotel goes, there's one bidder. This bidder is Samoan with a Chinese partner, is that right?
ATA: Yes, the tender for the sale of that headquarters to become a new hotel is closed, with a good source telling me that there's only one bidder. Which is one of the local hotelier here with a Chinese partner. When their final decision on that tender will come out no one knows but I am pretty sure the government will announce sometime next month and then we will know from there whether they are going to re-tender or they're going to reward that to the local hotelier and his Chinese partner.
DW: It's a good site, isn't it, for a hotel, it's just going to be a matter presumably of the new owners converting the current building. They're not going to pull it down and build another one?
ATA: Oh yes, I am told there's going to be an extension of the current building to have a conference facility there as well, and also the target of the government is to have that hotel completed before the next year's Commonwealth Youth Games. So they're hoping some of the athletes are going to be accommodated in that hotel.
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