It is Easter this weekend and the message of love, dignity and honesty is quite appropriate.
St Paul in his letter to the Corinthians, succinctly stated it in this way; “Love endures everything.”
Our people have heard many times during the heat of a Parliamentary debate these words often spoken by MPs, “E lē milia fa’au’u upu ole Palemene lenei”. Words uttered in this House of Parliament are not like oil poured to beautify.
It is a reminder that Members of Parliament must be allowed to exercise their right of freedom of expression to speak without fear on behalf of their Constituencies.
And the Speaker must abide by the Standing Orders of the House to ensure a smooth exchange of views.
When the Speaker openly colludes with his party in power, there is no more dignity nor respect for this Institution, the highest law-making body in our Independent State of Samoa.
The Speaker and Cabinet Ministers in their numerous interventions are of the view that the “dignity of Parliament” must be preserved at all costs.
This is interpreted to mean the Government should never be questioned by the Opposition on any statement made in the House from the Government.
That is mischief making.
What is hidden behind this deliberate misinterpretation of the Standing Orders and the bending of the rule of law is to carefully and slowly revive the practice of respect for the dignity of our peers, meaning whatever wrongs committed by them should never be questioned.
What is often overlooked in the village setting, is that the Matais in the Village Council cannot always remain tolerant of repetitive corrupt activities by any Matai regardless of rank.
There are different penalties imposed, the most devastating is the eviction of the Matai and family members from the Village forever.
Samoa hds its own checks and balances of power system in place before the palagis landed on our shores.
Our advice to our Government is to focus on the economy and stop playing politics.
The continuous witch hunting drive in delaying the Siumu Road Project has now resulted in the increased costs of construction.
FAST is still behaving as if it is still in opposition.
Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi
Leader of HRPP