22 Mar 2007

Samoan villagers and government to meet over hydro electric station

11:38 am on 22 March 2007

A meeting is set for next week between members of a Samoan village and the government over plans to build a hydro electric station on their land.

The village council of Sili is concerned about the impact the station might have on two rivers which provide their main source of water and food.

Construction is due to start on the plant by the end of the year and promises to provide electricity for the whole of Savaii island.

The island is currently dependent on one diesel fuelled power generator.

But as our correspondent in Samoa, Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia explains, the village mayor, Toala Fa'afo'i, announced that they have stopped any further developments until further discussions with the government.

"They had a meeting yesterday with the management of the Electric Power Corporation here and some government officials. They agreed to have a meeting in the village of Sili of Savai'i next week with the Minister of Works, together with the former Minister of Works who is the current Minister of Environment, and also the Member of Parliament for the village to further discuss the hydro plant."

Plans to build the hydro station were first mooted over three years ago but efforts by previous governments to establish a hydro power station in Sili have failed.