19 Mar 2010

American Samoa relief funds lying untouched after 6 months

2:41 pm on 19 March 2010

Senators in American Samoa are questioning why donations taken after the September earthquake and tsunami have not yet been spent.

Those in charge of the fund say they need to take time to make sure the money goes to those most in need.

Our correspondent in American Samoa, Monica Miller, reports.

"Donations that were made right after the tsunami from overseas organisations - there were some governments that also put in some money, and individuals here - they are being put in a special account and overseen by the territorial office for fiscal reform. And at a hearing that was held by the senate this week, it came as a surprise to senators that this money, which has amounted to more than 500-thousand dollars, has not been used. And the people who are in charge were saying at the hearing that they're going to decide how the money should be used, and then draw up some guidelines about how people can apply for the money."