24 May 2021

As it happened: Samoa parliament lockout a 'coup' - FAST

8:08 pm on 24 May 2021

The majority FAST party in Samoa has described the caretaker government's actions this morning in locking it out of parliament in Apia as tantamount to a coup.

The Supreme Court yesterday ordered parliament to sit, overruling the Head of State's decision to cancel today's sitting.

The FAST party of Fiame Naomi Mata'afa was expected to declare its majority and form a government, but instead arrived to find the doors locked.

The speaker has sided with the head of state, and the clerk of parliament said he was following orders from the caretaker minister for parliament - that's caretaker prime minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi.

Read back through the live updates here:

HRPP leader and caretaker prime minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi said only the Head of State has the power to convene parliament, and insisted his HRPP party remains the government.

FAST's leaders are meeting to decide their next steps, while a party spokesman is describing this morning's events as a coup.

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