Malietoa title decision challenged again

Papali’i Ioane and Papalii Titi Malietoa appealing the court decision

By Rula Su’a – Vaai
APIA, SAMOA – TUESDAY 16 DECEMBER 2017: The recent decision by the Lands Titles Court to appoint Fa’amausili Moli Malietoa as the next holder of the Malietoa title is again up for challenge.

Leader of one of the opposing parties, Papali’i Titi Malietoa told Talamua they are appealing because there are flaws in the decision that need to be straightened out.
He did not go into detail but said there are other members of the Talavou branch who are also challenging the decision.
The Lands and Titles Court decision was delivered last month and Fa’amausili, the eldest son of the late Head of State from his third union with Lili Tunu Malietoa was unanimously appointed by members of the three sides of the Malietoa title, Natutasina, Talavou and Moli.

A meeting of the three sides took place at Sapapali’i, Savai’i in June last year as part of the Court order for the three sides to appoint one person to carry the family title, but those opposing the decision did not take part in the meeting.

According to Court documents, the Malietoa Moli side had to appoint someone within 12 months from the Court proceedings, and if after 12 months no appointment was made, then it would passed on to the other sides, Natutasina or Talavou to make an appointment.

Again, each had 12 months to appoint someone as was the procedure set down by the Court.

When Fa’amausili was appointed in June, his half-brother Papali’i Titi Malietoa and Faamausili’s nephew and other relatives objected citing many reasons why Fa’amausili was not eligible as the next in line for the title.

Ten years ago, after the passing of Malietoa Tanumafili II, his extended family bestowed the title upon his son Fa’amausili at a dawn ceremony at Malie.

The late Malietoa Tanumafili 11 bestowing the Seiuli title on Dwayne The Rock at Malietoa’s residence at Fa’atoialemanu

However, the bestowal ceremony brought the descendants of Malietoa Natutasina, Malietoa Talavou and also Malietoa Moli to Court in 2008.
The decision then was for the three sides to sort out their differences and appoint someone. Following court hearings and meetings, it was not until June last year that the descendants of Natutasina and Talavou agreed to support Fa’amausili, on the understanding that if Moli’s descendants failed to appoint someone after 12 months, then it would be passed down to the heirs of Natutasina or Talavou.

The appeal was filed Thursday last week.