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Laumoli denies claim that TCF officers are to get overtime pay

Deputy Police Commissioner Leseiau Laumoli has dismissed claims by officers with the Territorial Correctional Facility (TCF) who say they have been waiting for overtime pay, but it has been delayed by Laumoli, who has refused to sign off on the overtime.When asked for comments about the claim, Laumoli told Samoa News on Monday that none of the officers within the Department of Public Safety are getting any overtime pay due to budget constraints faced by DPS, and this has been the case for several months.He said officers with TCF, the main police station in Fagatogo and the substations in Tafuna and Fagaitua are all affected, with no one getting any overtime - and this issue has been fully explained to all divisions of DPS, but it appears that some individuals are pushing the issue and questioning why no overtime has been paid.He said the overtime payment issue surfaced a while back when the department was faced with a shortage of officers to cover the three shifts, resulting in officers working 12-hour shifts.Once the new police academy graduated more officers, the three shifts per day were returned to normal hours, now that the department had received additional staff, said Laumoli.An officer at TCF told Samoa News that they received a report that TCF officers are qualified to get paid overtime, but that the payment had been delayed due to Laumoli, who refused to sign off on the documents. Another officer stated that in May this year they started working overtime until the time the new recruits graduated from the police academy, and they were promised overtime payment.In Fono hearings the issue of overtime payment for all officers within the department has come up many times, but DPS officials have testified that due to budget constraints, they are unable to come up with any additional funds for these payments.