On the Campaign Trail 2012

Governor endorses Faoa — Save & Sandra announce policy challenges


by Joyetter Feagaimaali’i-Luamanu

Supporters, friends and families of Team Faoa Aitofele Sunia and Taufete’e John Faumuina gathered at Fagaalu Park Saturday morning for their last major event before next Tuesday’s General Election, Nov. 6, 2012.

The day consisted of a parade with each of the different committees from the villages, who also entertained the crowd with their performances. Gov. Togiola Tulafono attended as a guest and offered remarks to the crowd in support of the Team Faoa & Taufete’e candidacy.

He donated $2,000 to the camp following his remarks. (The amount of money raised during the rally has not been officially announced, but estimates of $4,000 per village committee has been rumored.)

Opening remarks were offered by Taufete’e, who gave many thanks to the supporters, families and committees for supporting them. He noted that he has given remarks literally everywhere, on the TV, radio, events and also sports for the young ones. He said that no one that is running for office is depended upon to operate the government like Faoa. He said that within the several days that are remaining he will continue to walk the villages to reach out to the public. 

Faoa, next up, thanked everyone for attending and showing support during the campaign and for reaching out to members of the public who believe in their team.

To the students at the American Samoa Community College, he said that it was brought up by other gubernatorial candidates that they did not attend the school’s forum because they do not care. Faoa made it clear that was not the reason they did not show up, saying it was due to conflicting schedules, which had been laid out for a very long time, and committees and villages were waiting as well.

Faoa also noted that it would not be proper for them to have appeared at the forum, if they were not prepared to answer questions posed by the students.

He said it is wrong to say their absence was because they thought less of the forum. Faoa asked that for future reference, they should be informed in advance.

Togiola in his remarks declared there is no other team more qualified than Team Faoa and Taufete’e, when comparing the education, qualifications and the wisdom of all the teams vying for the office, saying the team is the only one that has it all.

 The governor thanked Faoa for his hard work during the ten critical and difficult years they were in office, noting that during the difficult times Faoa did not back down, nor did he fail to  address any issue he was assigned to work on within the government.

He pointed out that when the issue with Medicaid at LBJ Hospital occurred, Faoa was assigned to work on it, and the issues surrounding this subject have since been resolved; he also referenced Faoa’s current assignment — that of overseeing the ASDOE during a difficult time.

Addressing Faoa directly, Togiola said, “You did not fail in carrying out your duties as Lt. Governor.”

He said he cannot tell the public who to vote for, but can only testify on the work experience Faoa and Taufete’e have as leaders.

Togiola said Faoa was a businessman, counsel to the legislature and an ASG Treasurer, and he saw firsthand how to budget the monies for the government. He said no one running for office is up to the level of experience with Faoa.

The governor said being a Lt. Governor is not an easy task, because everyday you have to be ready in case something happens to the Governor.

Togiola said back in 2008 when he was hospitalized for many months and Faoa stepped up to the plate without any assistance, he carried out the duties of Governor and was successful in taking over.

Regarding Taufetee, Togiola said that Taufete’e worked with the department of Commerce in the Statistics Division prior to overseeing the LBJ hospital when it first became independent from the government. No other Lt. Governor candidate has that experience, he said.


PAGO PAGO, AS, OCT. 31, 2012— In a campaign that’s seen its share of legal challenges, the team of Save and Sandra launched their own series of “Policy Challenges” last week in the Samoa News in a series of ads outlining what they would do if elected in Nov. 6.

Today’s final “Policy Challenge” in the Samoa News is on “Government Accountability and Transparency.”

“We wanted to challenge ourselves and voters to think about the issues in a different way—a more specific way than has been done in the past,” said gubernatorial candidate Save Liuato Tuitele.

Save continued: “It’s not enough to say, ‘A brighter future for American Samoa.’ There have to be specifics. Details matter.”

The 5 Platform areas that Save and Sandra have identified as crucial in this election are:

•            Medical Care and Health & Wellness

•            Economy and Jobs

•            Education and Training

•            Federal and Government Relations

•            Government Transparency and Accountability

Save’s running mate, Lt. Governor candidate Tofoitaufa Sandra Salevasaosamoa King Young, echoed the sentiment, “Campaigns in American Samoa, well, really, in most campaigns, even mainland US ones….they often boil down to soundbites. Save and I wanted to run a different campaign, one that lays out a convincing and compelling plan for the future of American Samoa.”

Campaign director Marie Alailima concurred and said “It has been interesting and different.  Save and Sandra’s platform issues and plans for solutions fell in place once people working on the “front-lines” and professionals in various fields were invited to share with them where the trouble spots were in their fields, and what they thought were possible solutions. 

Save and Sandra’s commitment to developing a “peoples platform” gave these persons’ struggles and solutions a voice in this campaign.  It is a testament to how they will formulate policy and make decisions if they are elected as Governor and Lieutenant Governor of our Territory.”

More information on the plans and proposals of Save and Sandra can be obtained by visiting their website at  saveandsandra2012.com.


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