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Gov Lolo appoints three new members of his cabinet

Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga this week announced three more cabinet appointments, which are subject to Fono review and confirmation.


Among the new appointees is former senator and former ASG treasurer Velega Savali Jr. to serve as chief election officer, to oversee the Election Office, which is an independent agency of the executive branch.


Local statute states that the chief election officer serves a term of three years, commencing on the date of the confirmation by the Fono.


Soliai Tuipine Fuimaono, stepped down as chief election officer on Jan. 3 to take up his new post as senator. At the same time, Lolo appointed Seupule Leo as acting chief election officer, until a permanent replacement could be made.


Local election law states that if the chief election officer vacates the post or for any reason(s) is incapable of performing duties of the office, the deputy chief election officer shall be the acting chief election officer, who shall not serve more than 180 days - whether consecutive or not - within one year from the first day as acting chief election officer.


At the Department of Agriculture, the governor hs appointed Lealao Melila Purcell as director. Lealao served as director during the last nine-months of the Togiola Administration. Peter Gurr, the department’s long time deputy director, has been acting director since the Lolo administration took office.


For the Office of Program Planning and Budget Development, the governor appointed Catherine Dora Aigamaua-Saelua as director. During the Togiola administration, Aigamaua-Saelua served as deputy director and has been acting director since Jan. 3 for the Lolo Administration.


In separate memos appointing these cabinet members, the governor said these individuals shall be responsible for carrying out functions, duties and responsibilities of their appointments as prescribed by law.


The appointees will also faithfully implemented those performance deliverables set by the governor, the memo states.