11 May 2009

Court in Samoa refuses to strike out motion against MP compensation claim

8:27 am on 11 May 2009

The Supreme Court in Samoa has dismissed the Attorney General, Aumua Ming Leung Wai's motion to strike out the entire legal action by the SDUP leader against the former and the current speaker of parliament.

The SDUP leader, Asiata Sale'imoa Va'ai, is seeking compensation after he was suspended without pay three years ago.

He was found in contempt of parliament for writing a series of complaint letters to the International Parliamentary Union or IPU.

Asiata wrote to the IPU alleging the speaker was biased and that some of his rulings in the house against the opposition MPs were an abuse of power and violation of free speech under the constitution.

However the Attorney General has argued in the motion that the law prevents the defendant's, Tole'afoa Faafisi and Tolofuaivalelei Falemoe Lei'ataua the former and the current speakers from being sued.

The legal action by Asiata according to the AG was also frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of the court's proceedings.

But Justice Kellam has ruled for the strike out motion to be dismissed because there are several serious questions raised by the SDUP leader which required to be answered in a trial.