New Orders Allow Matai Title Bestowments with Conditions

File photo: Bestowal of matai titles in Sapunaoa Falealili.


28 July 2020 State of Emergency Updated Orders Apia Samoa. The latest State of Emergency Orders issued last night  by the Government Press Secretariat allows for the bestowment of chiefly matai titles under certain conditions.

The orders further extend Samoa’s covid-19 state of emergency status to the 30th of August 2020 and allows villages to host and conduct matai title bestowal ceremonies with limitations on numbers; and specific prohibitions on guests from other villages and overseas residents.

By the powers of Article 106 of the Constitution, the Head of State, le Ao Mamalu ole Malo, Tuimalealiifano Vaaletoa Sualauvi II after consultation with Cabinet this evening signed into law for the COVID 19 State of Emergency Orders to remain in force via its extension from 3rd August 2020 until 30th August 2020.

Public gatherings:
(1) Matai title bestowment is permitted on the following conditions:

(a) social distancing is to be observed;
(b) attendance is restricted to 50 couples;
(c) visitors (malo usu) are prohibited;
(d) only residents in Samoa are permitted to attend and the attendance of overseas residents is prohibited.

The rest of the State of Emergency Orders is still in force. The new Order commences on 28th July 2020.

Samoa’s borders remain closed with the exception of repatriated flights for citizens from Auckland via Air New Zealand.