30 June 2019, Apia Samoa. Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr Sailele Malielegaoi cautioned the 645 athletes and officials of Team Samoa against unecessary distractions, calling on all national teams to stay focused on winning gold in the Pacific Games set to start this coming Sunday.
He recalled that for the 2007 Pacfic Games where Samoa was also the host country, Samoa achieved third place in terms of gold medals.
The Prime Minister issued a challenge to all national teams and athletes competing in this year’s event to put Samoa at number one of the medal tally, reminding Team Samoa that the number of athletes this year is significantly higher compared to 2017.
Tuilaepa highlighted that team preparations have been lifted by the opportunity for many sports to prepare off-island to international standards, through the partnership with China.
“O lea ua to’atele atu le tatou au ta’aalo i lenei tausaga, e tatau ona tatou taumafai ia si’itia le tatou tulaga ma ia au i luga pine auro e mafai ona maua.
“Tatou taumafai i mea silisili ina ia ta’uleleia ai le tatou atunu’u ma ta’uleleia ai aiga;
O lea fo’i sa tele lava avanoa ma fesoasoani a isi atunuu aemaise lava Saina i le itu o le auina atu lea o tatou au ta’aalo i fafo ina ia tatou ausia le maualuga e tatau ona iai.”
Tuilaepa encouraged all team managers and coaches to keep an eye out for unnecessary distractions on the athletes in the lead up to the competition.
“From now until the next two weeks do not make any mistakes but focus on your training and make sure you are well prepared;
“You should cease the use of mobile phones especially on the eve of competition and on game day,” said the Prime Minister.
“E fautuaina outou faiaoga ina ia aoina uma telefoni ina ia aua nei toe fa’alavelave i le au ta’aalo aemaise lava pe a fa’apea e taeao aena e tauva ai.
“O le taimi nei ia outou ia e va’aia le au ta’aalo ia ola uma tou mata, mata e lua ia ei autafa, o tua ma luma aua e leiloa lava mea e tutupu amata atu i le taimi nei seia oo atu i le aso e fai ai le fa’amoemoe.”
24 countries from around the Pacific will be participating in 27 sports for the Samoa XVI Pacific Games 2019.