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Biggest win of 30 years in power

Saturday 5 March 2016 | Published in Regional


APIA – Samoan voters have returned the ruling Human Rights Protection Party in the biggest landslide victory in the party’s 30 year rule.

In the process, the voters have done away with a parliamentary opposition as the Tautua Samoa Opposition Party managed to pull through only two MPs as of election night’s provisional results.

HRPP won 44 seats, 2 to the Opposition and 3 independents. It means there will be no official parliamentary opposition as the minimum number of MPs to form a party is eight.

The Opposition Leader Palusalue Faapo 11 (655 votes) who ran against former Minister of Works Manu’alesagala Enokati (610 votes), were both beaten by newcomer Lea’ana Ronnie Posini who topped with 957 votes.

Two other senior Cabinet ministers lost their seats. Former Minister of Information Technology, Tuisugaletaua Sofara Aveau (813 votes) lost to longtime public servant with the Ministry of Revenue, Sulamanaia Tauiliili Tuivasa who polled 938 votes.

The former Minister of Women’s Affairs Tolofuaivalelei Falemoe Leiataua (556 votes) was beaten by Opposition MP Ili Setefano Ta’ateo Tafili who polled 814 votes.

Three women candidates came through and include Ali’imalemanu Alofa Tu’ua’u for Alataua West, Faimalotoa Kika Iemaia Stowers for Gagaifomauga No.1 and former Minister of Health, Gatoloaifaana Amataga Gidlow.

Senior Cabinet Minister Fiame Naomi Mataafa was elected unopposed and means the woman candidate with the highest percentage of votes will be elected to make up five women MPs in the House as of the new Electoral amendment.

There are a few close margins which may change with the final count to begin next Monday but will not change the party composition as the close results are between HRPP candidates.

The Human Rights Protection Party Leader, Tuilaepa Sailele Maliegaoi acknowledged the country’s support and the overwhelming vote of confidence in his party’s vision for the country.

- Talamua