20 Mar 2007

American Samoa proposes change to US citizenship application

1:52 pm on 20 March 2007

American Samoa is working on a proposal to help foreigners, who have been permanent residents for several years, to qualify to apply for US citizenship.

The Governor Togiola Tulafono says under federal laws, a foreigner must reside within the United States for a certain period of time before becoming eligible to apply for U.S. citizenship.

He says this does not include a person living in American Samoa.

Togiola says there are a lot of foreigers, especially citizens of Samoa who have resided in American Samoa legally for more than 40 years, but are unable to qualify to apply for US citizenship unless they reside in the US.

He says his administration is trying to work with the US government to allow these individuals to apply using the time they are living permanently in American Samoa as a qualifying factor.