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Final act: Togiola signs land lease with Samoa

UTULEI — Outgoing Gov. Togiola Tulafono yesterday, in his final acts as governor, signed the lease between Samoa and American Samoa, where a one acre property near Apia will be allocated to the Territory to set up an office.

In reciprocating, Togiola said American Samoa will provide land in Tafuna for Samoa to build its consular office, which is now located in a leased office space at the Methodist Church building in Fagatogo.

Togiola said the arrangement will greatly benefit both Samoas.

“It’s a win-win situation for the Territory and Samoa and it is mutually beneficial to our respective government’s future projects,” said the governor. “It’s a good deal and a natural fit where this is a perfect situation for both governments in the availability of land to carry out our service to our citizens.”

He also announced a joint effort of the outgoing and incoming administrations to help Samoa and its recovery from Hurricane Evan.

“On behalf of Lieutenant Governor Faoa Sunia, I am very happy and quite proud to team up with new Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga and new Lieutenant Governor Lemanu Peleti Mauga to present to Samoa Head of State, His Highness Tuiatua Tupua Tamasese Efi, and Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, and the people of Samoa, a donation of US$100,000 from the people and government of American Samoa to assist in the rebuilding of homes, lives and families that were badly affected by the devastation of the recent cyclone,” said Governor Togiola.

“May Our God of all mercy and of all consolation continue to provide comfort to our people in Samoa. And as Samoans here in the east, may this gift express our solidarity as a people with the same culture and same language with all that continues in the work of recovery and rebuilding in Samoa.”

Gov. Togiola said the monetary donation to Samoa came from leftover funds of the District Projects, and the local relief drive will continue with acceptance of donations of goods as well as monetary contributions that the American Samoa Government will continue to send weekly to Apia.