21 Dec 2016

Samoa government is amending the Police Act

2:44 pm on 21 December 2016

The Samoa government is amending the Police Service Act to allow the Head of State, on advice from cabinet, to suspend or terminate the commissioner or assistant commissioners.

Samoan police headquarters in Apia

Samoan police headquarters in Apia Photo: RNZI/Sally Round

The Prime Minister, who is also Police Minister, Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi tabled the amendments saying it aims to speed up the process because a commission of inquiry takes too long.

Tuila'epa is also the minister for the newly established National Prosecution Office and is seeking similar amendments in its legislation.

Tuila'epa said the grievances within the police are the main reasons for his push for amendments.

The Samoan Prime Minister Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi speaks at the launching of the new Talofa Airways at Fagalii airport on August 22 2016

The Prime Minister of Samoa and Police Minister Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi Photo: RNZI/Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia

The suspended Police Commissioner, Fuiavailili Egon Keil, is facing more than 200 criminal charges but his application for a stay of proceedings will be heard next month.

The suspended Director of National Prosecution, Mauga Precious Chang, has been cleared by the district court of traffic related offences, but she is yet to be re-instated.

There are local media reports quoting the Attorney General, Lemalu Herman Retzlaff, as saying they are awaiting an appeal against the not-guilty verdict.

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