The American Samoan delegate to the US Congress, Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin, has thanked the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, for supporting his request to allow Samoans applying for U.S. visas to be interviewed in Apia rather than Auckland, New Zealand.
The Congressman quoted the US State Department as saying a pilot programme will be put in place next month and an interviewer will be sent from the US Consulate in New Zealand to Apia to conduct interviews.
The U.S. Ambassador, William P. McCormick, is expected to attend an official ceremony to mark the beginning of the pilot programme in Apia during the week of December 11th.
Faleomavaega has credited Ms Rice for making the pilot programme possible.