Fiame Naomi Mata'afa & Savalenoa Mareva Betham-Annandale
Fiame Naomi Mata'afa & Savalenoa Mareva Betham Annandale

Tali le Loia Sili i le tusi a le tamaitai Palemia

I se tusi a le tamaitai Palemia afioga Fiame Naomi Mataafa na faia i le Aso 4 o Aukuso 2021 na fautuaina ai le Loia Sili Savalenoa Mareva Betham-Annandale ina ia fai se fuafuaga faasaga i le taitai o le vaega faaupufai a le HRPP susuga Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Sailele Malielegaoi ma ona sui e ala i lafoga ma tuuaiga o loo tuuaia ai le faamasinoga.

O lenei foi tusi na taua ai e le tamaitai Palemia ina ia tuuina atu se tali a le Loia Sili i le aso lava lea i le itula e 4 i le afiafi e ala i se fuafuaga autasi i auala e tatau ona uia.

I ripoti a le Newsline Samoa na taua ai se finagalo o le Loia Sili e tali atu ai i lea tusi a le Palemia ma faapea na te manaomia se feiloaiga e faalia ai sona finagalo nai loo le tali tusitusia.

Taua foi e ripoti a lea lomiga, i le mataupu o lafoga faia e le vaega faaupufai a le HRPP faasaga i le faamasinoga o le tali a Savalenoa e faapea “o le aiā saoloto o le faaalia o manatu o tagata o loo maioio i le faavae ma ua ia ioe foi o lea aiā saoloto e iai ona pa puipui”. Saunoa foi Savalenoa “o le vaega e tatau ona fai o le faatautaia lea o se suesuega i lafoga ua faia, vaai poo a ituaiga lafoga e soli ai le tulafono, o a vaega e manaomia ai le faia o tagi o soligatulafono ma le vaega e tatau ona fai e a’u”.

“What can be done is that we make an assessment of what has been said, what meets the threshold for an offence, what requires a complainant, and what I can initiate on my own.”

Faaalia foi e le Loia Sili i ripoti a lea Niusipepa e leai se mafuaaga o le a faamavae ai ma lona tofiga.

E iai le faamoemoe o le a maua se tali mai a le tamaitai Palemia i le faaiuga o le vaiaso e ala i lea mataupu.

O le tusi lenei a le afioga ia Fiame na tuuina atu i le Loia Sili i le gagana faaperetania;

4 August 2021

Attorney General

As you will already be aware, Samoa has witnessed a significant number of unprecedented public and media attacks by the Leader of the Opposition, Deputy, current members of his Caucus, opposition legal advisors and consultants in the form of a former head of the bench, a senior lawyer and others, which have been made against the judiciary of Samoa and upon individual judges.

These have become particularly intense in the eleven days since the decision of the Court of Appeal in Attorney General v Matafeo Latu & ors and have, for example, included:
•    Repeated statements by the Leader of the Opposition that, for instance, “It is very obvious that (the judiciary)  have made unjust decisions, especially the “Latu” decision in which they have ruthlessly trampled on the Constitution of Samoa..
What must (the judiciary) do? They need to resign.”
“E piopio le faaiuga, e pioio le faamasinoga, e piopio foi faamasino”.
•    A rally convened by the Human Rights Protection Party convened “because the Chief Justice has destroyed the Constitution of Samoa” and quoting the Leader of the Opposition as saying:
“If we are going to seek justice, then the Chief Justice and all the Supreme Court justices should resign.”
•    The convening of large rallies and processions of vehicles near and around the Supreme Court building, causing the courts to close temporarily, with the caucus spokesman on loud hailer screaming:
“’i vaai la i le mea la’a o’o i le Faamasinoga Sili…,” and other threatening words.

As you would no doubt be aware, it is the fundamental duty of any Attorney General to uphold and defend the independence of the judiciary, and hold safe its’ members against any attack of this kind, or any kind. Despite the exceptional seriousness of these attacks and the clear risk to public order, I am not aware of any step that you have taken to date in accordance with the duty.
I am therefore writing to ask you to advise:
•    What steps you have already taken, including but not limited to:
•    Warnings or cautions, either to those involved or as general public statements;
•    Advice to the Police Commissioner as to how he may lawfully protect the courts and the judiciary and, further, uphold public order; and/or
•    Filing and/or preparation of proceedings for contempt of court; in discharge of that duty, and
•    What steps you will now take within 48 hours of receipt of this letter.

I am directing you to provide a written response to my queries by 4.00pm today. I have also sent a copy of this letter to His Honour the Chief Justice, as head of the judiciary in Samoa, and would also ask that you provide a copy of your response to His Honour by the same time.

Hon Fiame Naomi Mataafa


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