14 Apr 2008

Samoa's Malietoa title bid wide open as court to hear challenges

1:54 pm on 14 April 2008

The number of parties vying for the Malietoa title in the Samoa Lands and Titles court is yet to be confirmed.

The case will be heard by the Lands and Titles Court next month.

Fa'amausili Moli Malietoa, the son of the last Malietoa and Head of State Malietoa Tanumafili II, was bestowed the title mid last year but that decision is being challenged.

Our correspondent Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia says those appealing base their move on a court ruling in 1939.

He says according to that decision, the next in line for the chiefly title must be agreed upon by all three Malietoa clans - Malietoa Moli, Maleitoa Gatutasina and Malietoa Talavou.

"When the day comes for the lands and titles court case to be heard, there will be other petitions to be filed at the time of the hearing. So we don't know yet the exact number of petitions that will be heard in court."

Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia says there could be a lot of petitions, which means it's likely to be an ongoing case.