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Pacific News Briefs

Samoa Housing Corporation Chief Executive Mata’utia Rula Levi presenting their donation to the Samoa Cancer Society to assist with the early detection to cure cancer public awareness campaign.  [Courtesy photo]
compiled by Samoa News staff


The prime minister of Samoa, Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, is due to return to Apia on Sunday after receiving medical treatment in New Zealand.

Tuila'epa was flown to New Zealand by air ambulance two weeks ago.

Our correspondent in Samoa, Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia, said there's been little detail about the state of health of the long serving leader.

He said people have been kept in the dark since Tuila'epa was admitted to intensive care at Samoa's national hospital in Apia at the beginning of this month.

"Only statements from the government through the first secretary saying of the prime minister, there is nothing to worry about, the prime minister is doing well in New Zealand and he is sending his love and his best wishes to everyone here in Samoa."

"The latest that we have, the acting prime minister, Papaliitele Niko Lee Hang, who is the minister of works and infrastructure, telling the media here that the prime minister is looking forward to returning on Sunday," he said.

(Source: RNZ)

The Samoa Housing Corporation, (SHC) has pledged to donate annually to help the Samoa Cancer Society with her public awareness promotions for early detection as a means for early prevention of Cancer in particular Breast Cancer.

SHC’s Chief Executive Mata’utia Rula Levi, staff members and the Corporations’ Board of Directors reassured SHC’s annual pledge at the presentation of their first $4220.60 donation to the Samoa Cancer Society as part of the Pinktober Month.

Said Mata’utia, “We all have family members who lost their lives to cancer and those still fighting cancer. And our staff and Board through our donation would like to reassure our cancer patients that we are fighting together with them.

“Through our regular pray meetings, staff has also shared their personal experiences from relatives affected by cancer.

 “We get to share our own losses and grievances for our relative diagnosed with cancer because I tell you it’s better to share than to bury it because it will never heal the pain.”

The SHC’s support according to Mata’utia is also to honor the memory of a late Chief Executive and past staff members who lost the battle to cancer.

The proceeds were raised by a staff walkathon and through public donations targeting SHC clients to deposit whatever they can donate in a special Piggy Bank at the main office.

In the presentation ceremonies, Manamea Apelu Tuiletufuga Saaga Schwalger, a catalyst leading the awareness campaign and hailed as a fighter against Cancer was also acknowledged.



On Wednesday, October 18, 2017, the Ministry of Health conducted a stakeholders’ consultation on the Protocol to eliminate illicit trade in tobacco products.

Illicit trade poses a serious threat to public health because it increases access to – often cheaper – tobacco products, thus fuelling the tobacco epidemic and undermining tobacco control policies.
The Protocol is an international treaty with the objective of eliminating all forms of illicit trade in tobacco products through a package of measures to be taken by countries acting in co-operation with each other. It is a global solution to a global problem.

The Ministry of Health emphasizes however that Samoa has a primary legal responsibility for ensuring the public is protected from the harmful constituents of tobacco products through the elimination of illicit trade of tobacco products. The ultimate aim is to reduce the accessibility and affordability of tobacco products.

To prevent illegal trade, the Protocol aims to make the supply chain of tobacco products secure through a series of measures by governments.  It requires the establishment of a global tracking and tracing regime within five years of entry into force of the Protocol.

Other provisions to ensure control of the supply chain include but not limited to:
•    licensing;
•    record keeping requirements; and
regulation of internet-sales, duty-free sales and international transit.

The availability of cheap, illicit cigarettes increases consumption and thus future tobacco-related deaths. Consumption falls if the illicit trade is eliminated because in most countries, illicit cigarettes are much cheaper than their legal, fully taxed equivalent.

The Samoa Ministry of Health requests for a co-operative relationship amongst public health officials and relevant government agencies in ensuring our national measures and laws are effectively implemented and enforced.