01 December 2022 Press Release. Leader of the Opposition Human Rights Protection Party Hon Tuilaepa Dr Sailele Malielegaoi has been re-elected as Chair of the Samoa Rugby Union for a further four years by a new look Board of Directors.
“Hon. Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi has been re-elected as Chairman of Lakapi Samoa, extending his tenure for another four years. The long serving Chairman of Lakapi Samoa has been re-elected by the new Board at its Special meeting..”
The Lakapi Samoa announcement also confirmed four new Board Members of the mother union’s governing body – two elected at its recent AGM, and two appointed by a Vetting Committee.
“Lakapi Samoa is pleased to announce the following changes to the Board of Directors following the recent Annual General Meeting held on the 24th November 2022.”
Faleomavaega Fuimaono Dickie Tafua is a former rugby coach for both Manu Samoa 15s and 7s. As a player he captained the first Samoa team that played against Wales in 1986. Leaana Ronnie Posini is an HRPP MP who is also President of the Safata Union.
A Vetting Committee was voted in at the AGM, tasked to select two vacant positions of Independent Appointed Directors. As provided by the SRU Constitution; one with an Accounting/Finance background and one with a Commercial/Marketing background.
As confirmed by Lakapi Samoa, “The decision from the Vetting Committee’s deliberations selected Faumuina Margaret Godinet-Crichton as the Finance Appointed Director, while Matafeo George Latu was selected as the Commercial Appointed Director.”
President Namulauulu Sami Leota continues on the Board as an ex-oficio member. He has served four years as President and continues unopposed at AGMs.
Faumuina Margaret Godinet-Crichton is currently the Vice President of Marist St Joseph’s Sports Club and a former Assistant Chief Executive Officer for MCIT.
Matafeo George Latu is the Managing Partner of Latu Lawyers, who specialise in Banking and Commercial transactions. He is also a former Manu Samoa international who played three matches at the 1995 Rugby World Cup and is currently a World Rugby Judicial Officer.
“The two Appointed Directors will serve a four year term,” confirms the press release.
The third Independent Director with a required Legal background appointed two years ago is Faimalomatumua Mathew Lemisio. Also elected two years ago at the Lakapi Samoa AGM are Directors, Lotte Sefo of Tepatasi to represent Women’s Rugby and Lealaitafea Leatigaga Peniamina Tofa of Apia Lua Construction to represent the Big Island of Savaii’s Sub-Unions.
As required by the Samoa Rugby Union Constitution, the four Elected and three Appointed Board Directors would then convene to appoint a Chairperson who is not one of them.
Six of the seven Board of Directors convened its Special meeting on Thursday evening with President Namulauulu Sami Leota presiding. Associate Minister Faleomavaega Dickie Tafua is currently in New Zealand and was unable to attend the Special meeting.
The Chairman and the Board of Lakapi Samoa acknowledged and thanked the outgoing Elected and Appointed Board Members who have all completed four year terms.
“The Chairman and Board thank Independent Directors Afamasaga Rico Tupa’i (Commercial / Aana Union) and Tuiloma Sina Retzlaff (Finance / Falealili Union) as well as the two Upolu Sub-Union representatives, Fata Pito Malifa (Apia Union) and Fa’alogo Kapeli Fa’alogo (Siumu Union) for all their commitment and contribution in serving Lakapi Samoa on the Board particularly over the last several years.”
Chairman Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi commented: “I am delighted and hugely challenged by the confidence entrusted by the Board to continue on the role of Chairman, working closely with the new Directors and the Management team to guide our Union through the next phase of its journey..
“2023 is a massive year ahead with Rugby World Cup as an immediate focus but also remain firm on continuing our Board’s strategic plans in growing and strengthening our teams, and growing our commercial portfolio to assist and ease our financial tension moving forward”.