By Lagi Keresoma
APIA, SAMOA – 30 OCTOBER 2020: Thirty villages have requested changes to their traditional honorific salutations – Fa’alupega.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Women, Community and Social Development (MWCSD), Afamasaga Fa’auiga Mulitalo confirmed that at the closing date, only 30 villages have written to the Ministry to confirm changes to their fa’alupega.
There are more than 100 villages in Samoa. “The number of villages who want to make changes indicate that the majority of villages are happy or prefer to leave their fa’alupega as is.”
The changes according to Afamasaga are based on Court decisions relating to village issues.
The Ministry has been in discussion with villages on the changes they prefer and afterwards, the changes are reconfirmed with them before finalising it.
Matters before the Court
The Ministry hopes to finalise the changes at the end of the year before reprinting the new version of the Tusi Fa’alupega O Samoa Aoao next year.
However, there are matters relating to fa’alupega currently before the Court and by the time the decision is delivered, the book may already have been printed.
“It is not the Ministry’s call to make changes but only to record and note the changes to update the Fa’alupega book,” said Afamasaga..
The call for updates went out in March this year but due to COID-19 lockdown, it was extended to May. However, villages requested for another extension which was granted.
The villages were encouraged to make written presentations and also signed to confirm the content they want published.