Gov’s office payroll 50+, mostly contract workers
Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga’s Special Advisor Iulogologo Joseph Pereira, told Samoa News that more than 50 employees are listed for the governor's Office and of the 50+ there are 13 career service employees, while the rest are contract workers.
He added that Chief of Staff Fiu Johnny Saelua and Deputy Chief of Staff Taimalelagi Minnie Tuia were told to place the career service employees in other line functions with the Governor's Office, while the contract workers will be allowed to continue working until their contracts are complete.
Iuloglogo said they have given the career service employees the option that they can move to another department or remain working as contract workers. He explained that the governor is hoping to make everyone that works at the Governor’s office contract workers, so when the Governor and Lt. Governor leave office, everyone leaves with them, giving the new administration a clean slate and making the process much smoother during transition.
Iulogologo also confirmed that so far the former administration has four alleged ghost employees.
Regarding American Samoa’s government office in Hawai’i, Iuloglogo said Gus Hanneman is the interim caretaker, until the government is complete with redefining the Hawai’i office and its functions.
The governor is looking into the services provided for the people of American Samoa in Hawai’i to determine if this office will remain open, said Iu.
In the meantime, a question has been raised about the hiring of Brian Thompson to work for the Governor’s office as their tech person, given the fact he has a record.
Thompson was convicted of third degree assault, a misdemeanor for offensive touching. Samoa News contacted Thompson at the governor’s office, however the call was referred to the IT division by the receptionist.
Thompson was accused of touching his wife’s niece inappropriately and was initially charged with first degree sexual abuse which was amended to third degree assault. Thompson in his 30’s entered his guilty plea December 2011 and was sentenced to probation for two years.
The probation office has confirmed that Thompson is currently on probation.
Chief of Staff Fiu declined to comment when Samoa News contacted him regarding the position attained by Thompson.