APIA, SAMOA – 30 JULY 2020: Samoa’s newest political party that was registered today wants Samoa’s future Prime Ministers to have only two terms or ten years in office “to ensure good governance and avoid the abuse of power and entrenched corruption.” Samoa’s current Prime Minister has been in power for over twenty years.
The party, FA’ATUATUA I LE ATUA SAMOA UA TASI, abbreviated FAST is the seventh political party now registered to contest the general elections in April 2021.
Led by Party Chairman, former Speaker La’aulialemalietoa Leuatea Polata’ivao Fosi, the party also wants to abolish the taxation of church ministers which is a sticky issue between the mainline churches and Government with many CCCS church ministers awaiting court cases for refusing to pay income taxes.
In a press statement released after the registration by the Electoral Commissioner, Faimalōmatumua Mathew Lemisio, the FAST Party said it is advancing National Unity for Change in the April 2021 general elections.
RESTORING FAMILY VALUES
The Party’s Vision and Objectives are based on Christian values and principles and Samoan culture. Against the background of prevalent domestic violence against women and children and many social problems, its’ aim is to restore and nurture family values and unity as the core of achieving social cohesion and a healthy and sustainable economic and national development.
The party name, translated National Unity in God and its abbreviation FAST, subscribes to the spiritual disciplines of prayers and fasting for the nation and FAST is also synonymous with change, movement, action, speed and progress.
Significantly, the FAST Party was registered today by representatives of the 11 recognized traditional constituencies of Samoa; 6 of the Puleono representing Savaii and 3 representing Tumua from Upolu, and representatives of Aiga ile Tai and Vaa o Fonoti.
The Party was registered by the Electoral Commissioner, Faimalomatumua Mathew Lemisio who warmly welcomed the Party representatives saying FAST is the seventh political party to have been registered in the lead up to the 2012 general elections.
The Party’s Logo is represented by the oval Samoan fale with 11 posts representing the 11 traditional seats of the Samoan constituencies, the Samoan flag with the Southern Cross.
The FAST Party Vision and Principles are summarized: “Our Family, Our People, Our Nation, Our Culture and Christian Values, is our collective Responsibility.”
The Party is fielding candidates in all the 50 constituencies for the 2021 general elections.
It will be launching its website: fastparty.ws soon that will carry all information about the Party such as its Constitution, Vision, Principles and Values and Election Platform and candidates for the general elections.
Some of what FAST wants to change if it becomes the Government:
- Limiting the term of the PM to only two terms to ensure good governance and avoid the abuse of power and entrenched corruption;
- Abolishing the taxation of church ministers;
- Review the current 3 controversial Bills;
- Review Electoral Act to address identified anomalies;
- Recognize the major contribution of overseas based Samoans to the countrys development;
- Decentralising selected services to Village Councils management;
- More transparent and efficient management of public owned assets under the Government’s care.
FAST wants to make Samoa a place where every Samoan citizen has equal opportunities in economic growth, have strong public services to support every Samoan, to value and recognise Samoan culture and customs, to have public confidence in Samoan healthcare, and every Samoan to enjoy a free, peaceful and safe country.
- To elect competent men and women to Parliament through Samoan culturally acceptable democratic elections to give effect to the Vision of the party and to represent the people effectively in Parliament;
- To place competent men and women in key Government positions to ensure strong public services to support every Samoan citizen;
- To promote and protect the freedoms, welfare and security of all Samoan citizens, including the Samoan culture and customs;
- To build and sustain an economy which can attract and retain intelligence, skills and efforts of all Samoan citizens;
- To actively practice and promote principles of accountability within Government, Judiciary and Parliament to the people of Samoa; and
- To stamp out any acceptable practice of corruption in Government, Judiciary and Parliament.
The principles of our party are based on our belief in the democratic processes and that those in Government and in Parliament and in the Judiciary are there for no other reason than to serve the people of this country. Therefore our principles that we have based this party on are:
- All political authority come from the people of Samoa by democratic means, including regular and free elections;
- All assets and resources under the Government control or authority belong to the people of Samoa, and should be managed for the benefit of all, including future generations;
- All Samoan citizens are entitled to dignity, self-respect and free practice of their customs and culture;
- All Samoan citizens are entitled to the protection of their human rights recognised in the Constitution of Samoa, and
- All branches of Government must always act with the understanding that they must account any actions to the people of Samoa.