Long serving member of the Human Rights Protection Party (HRPP) Laaulialemalietoa Leuatea Polataivao Schmidt has today announced his official resignation from the ruling party to become an Independent Member of Parliament.
The former Speaker of the House and former Minister of Agriculture chose Samoa’s 58th Independence Day to make his announcement during a midday press conference at the Maota o Samoa compound in Vaitele.
Representing the Savaii constituency of Gagaifomauga No3 consisting of Letui, Fagaee and Sasina – Laauli says it is on the advice of his electorate that he bids farewell to a party he and his family have served for many decades.
Laauli’s late father, Polataivao Fosi Schmidt was a founding member of HRPP and a Member of Parliament for Gagaifomauga No3 for 35 years from 1964-1999. Affectionately known as “King Pola”, he served as a Minister of Health, a Minister of Labour, and a Minister of Lands and Environment.
Laauli told Samoa Global News that plans for a new party are underway, but for now he is officially an Independent representative of Parliament.
“O lea ua tapena le vaega faaupufai fou; ae o le taimi nei o lea ua ou tutoatasi, o le finagalo lava o le Itumalo”.
Laauli says the relationship with HRPP has never been the same since he voted against the Electoral Act amendments over a year ago. Laauli has been outspoken in Parliament on national issues that he says greatly affects his Constituency.
“It started with my rejection of the Electoral Act amendments; and the many other areas of change that I have spoken out against”, he says.
Laauli says his Constituency have taken offense to the many inappropriate accusations being thrown towards him by Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi during live feed Parliamentary sessions.
Nevertheless in Samoan traditional oratory that Laauli is known for and gifted with, he conveyed an apology to HRPP as he took a gracious bow from the political party that he says was founded by his District as well as others.
Asked if he would be expecting a by-election for crossing the floor, Laauli says his electorate have given him the assurance that he would return as their representative.
Laauli’s exit remarks in Samoan:
“E ui ina matou mafatia ma faanoanoa leaga matou te le tulai pei o Faleata pe mou pei o Aana… leai…
E le mafai ona galo Afia isi ona vao, ona o le Vaega Faaupufai na fofoa i o matou lima na fofoa i lima o le itumalo lenei ma isi itumalo.
Ae aumaia le alofa e fai ma fusi o le feagaiga na osi lau Afioga i le Taitai ma la tatou Vaega Faaupufai.. o a feteenaiga…e le faagalo ala o gata i luga o papa, e le galo foi ala o aeto i le lagi ma vaatele i luga o le sami. Leaga e le o se mafutaga na fau nei ua asoa ma autausagā ma umi la tatou mafutaga.
Ae afai ua sipa le lamaga ma le sagatonu fuafuaga i lo tatou nonofo ai, ia avea lenei itula ou te faamaualalo atu ai ma ou faatoese atu i se sala o lenei itumalo; i se upu ma se tala, i se tū ma se aga ua toia ai le va i lo tou finagalo.
Ae matou te faamoemoe i Le Atua ua na o ia na te silafia le moni o le alofa i le itumalo ma le atunuu.
E le o toe po foi se lilo i mea o loo tutupu ma ua tatau ai i le aiga sa Tupuā mal e Aiga Sa Malietoā ma le Faletolu, ona tulai e saili se laveai mo le atunuu”.