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Fono News



Prior to the Fono recess, the Fono received a letter from Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga nominating Jonathan Fanene as Director for the Department of Youth & Women’s Affairs. The governor pointed out that although Fanene lacks experience in government affairs, his personal journey as a youth — through participation in cultural and athletic programs — gives him the inspiration to help women and children reach their potential.


Fanene’s motivation and drive to help the youth realize their dreams and strive for new heights is perfectly aligned with the objectives of the DYWA, which is to empower women and young people in the territory to improve their quality of life through education, skills training and cultural programs.


The governor pointed out Fanene is one of the most highly recognized athletes from the territory having played many years in the National Football League and has since returned home to serve his people, family and community. Fanene holds an Associate Degree in Sociology from the University of Utah, where he earned Academic All Mountain Conference honors in football.


Lolo said Fanene’s involvement in numerous charities, his understanding of the value of teamwork and his commitment to family and community give the governor great confidence he will successfully achieve the goals of the DYWA and urged lawmakers for their support in confirming Fanene to the post.




Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga is seeking Fono approval for government property across from the old Samoa packing Company now leased to Te’o Fuavai and Sons, and is asking for an additional 30 years. Local statute states that lease of government property is subject to Fono approval. The original lease was for nine years, 11 months and 29 days which should be completed by April 27, 2022. The new proposal is for an extension of a 30 years,___ which will expire April 30, 2042. According to the governor’s letter to Fono leaders, these premises are exclusively to establish a fast food business and subleasing for office space.


“ASG recognizes the importance of commerce in the development and improvement of the local economy,” wrote Lolo.


The area of the lease is 0.217 acres, and the rental, according to the lease, is $300 which would be paid on the first of each month.


The lease states Te’o cannot sublease the premises unless approved by the government, and failure to do so may constitute material breach of lease.




The LBJ Medical Center Chapel has been turned into a Community Center and this is a concern raised by Rep Vailoata Amituana’i. At times, he says, families of those who have passed on must wait until the chapel is unoccupied before they can hold their family service.


He said sometimes, when a person dies in the morning, families have to wait until a meeting held in the chapel is completed — and that is unacceptable.


“The whole purpose of having a chapel is for family services for the mourning families — yet family members have to wait for several hours.” Vailoata asked the Hospital Committee to look into the matter because this is “ just inhumane” to have families wait for hospital officials to finish their meetings.


He also pointed out the chapel is now being called a community center, yet the reason for a chapel is for services.




With the recent flooding happening in front of the Mormon Church in Ottoville, and in Kokoland all the way into Fagaima village and in front of Cost-u-Less, Tualauta Rep Florence Saulo asked the Director of Public Works as to why it has taken four years for the government to fix the flooding problems.


The hearing for DPW was called following a request from the faipule on several issues, regarding the unfixed backroads and street lights. During the hearing Saulo asked DPW Director Faleosina Voigt if ASG is waiting for the worst to happen, like a tragic accident, in order for them to finally make the repairs happen.


The faipule told Voigt that she needs to conduct site inspections when the flooding actually occurs, saying, “It has been mostly devastating for the families that are actually affected.”


She told the DPW Director that since she (Saulo) took office last year it’s been her priority to make improvements for the terrible conditions of about 30 secondary roads — mostly in Kokoland, Tafuna, Fagaima, Ililiili, Pavaiai, Faleniu, Mapusaga/Mesepa and the Vaitogi road heading to Roy Hall’s residence. She said assistance from ASG is much needed to heed to the people’s needs.


In the meantime, officials with the Departments of Public Works informed Taulauta faipule, Larry Sanitoa the soakage pits are being constructed in front of Cost-U-Less to mitigate the flooding problems there, and barricades have been set up at the site. DPW officials and McConnell Dowell and its engineering team can be seen at the construction of the soakage pits.