Extra seat thrown out, FAST wins Samoa election

RNZ.co.nz and is republished with permission

The Supreme Court in Samoa has thrown out the electoral office’s decision to appoint an extra woman member of parliament.

It means the decision breaks a month-long deadlock from the April election, handing the newcomer FAST party a majority.

The Faatuatua ile Atua Samoa ua Tasi party leader, Fiame Naomi Mataafa
The Faatuatua ile Atua Samoa ua Tasi party leader, Fiame Naomi Mataafa Photo: RNZ Pacific/Tipi Autagavaia

The electoral office last month added the extra seat purportedly to meet a provision in the constitution that 10 percent of seats are reserved for women.

That extra seat fell to the caretaker HRPP government, creating a 26-all deadlock.

But the Supreme Court today returned a unanimous verdict ruling that decision was unconstitutional.

However, this decision was the premise for the head of state’s controversial call for a snap election, scheduled for Friday.

Whether that call was constitutional is to be ruled on this afternoon by the Supreme Court.

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