17 March 2022, Apia Samoa. The Cabinet has appointed Ms. Saoleititi Maeva Betham-Vaai as the new Chief Executive Officer for the Ministry of Finance. The announcement was made by Prime Minister Hon Fiame Naomi Mataafa during her weekly press conference with the media on Thursday afternoon.
Saoleititi, who hails from Saleilua Falealili, returns to lead the Ministry of Finance, where she began her career as a public servant in 1992 and worked her way up through the ranks for 14 years until she left in 2006, having achieved Assistant Chief Executive Officer status within the Ministry.
The Prime Minister said Cabinet is confident Saoleititi has the leadership to take up the role as head of Samoa’s Finance Ministry. “We believe Saoleititi has the experience and knowledge to lead Samoa’s Ministry of Finance for the next three years.”
During her time with Ministry of Finance Ms Betham-Vaai was appointed as the Assistant Secretary of Finance in 2001, responsible for the preparation and monitoring of the national budget as well as monitoring of aid funded projects. Under government reforms, she was re-appointed as an Assistant Chief Executive Officer Finance for the Ministry of Finance (formerly the Treasury Department) from 2002 to 2006 with similar responsibilities.
In 2006, Saoleititi took up the role as the Executive Director’s Advisor to the Asian Development Bank Board of Directors until 2009.
Ms. Betham Vaai holds a Masters of Business Administration. She also holds a Bachelor of Business (Majoring in Accounting) from the University of Central Queensland, Australia. She holds the chiefly title of Sa’oleititi from Saleilua, Falealii and is married to Alo Kolone Vaai with two daughters.