Blogger Banned from Samoa – Analysis

What's left of Camp Samoa having been banned from Samoa - a total loss!

What’s left of Camp Samoa having been banned from Samoa – a total loss!

In this post I give details relating to Samoa’s banning of an unwanted blogger, me. The official version is that I breached the terms of my work permit and was an overstayer – kind of hilarious that a Kiwi gets exported from Samoa for overstaying eh?! It’s probably more than 1,000:1 the other way round for Samoans have been booted out in their hundreds from New Zealand for overstaying going back more than forty years! I show the document and event trail indicates quite clearly that the decision came ‘from the top’, i.e. the Prime Minister Tuila’epa. I detail how deception is used by Samoans against the Palagi by analysing a long sequence of events and explain how the apparently callous actions of a leader of a supposedly benevolent democratic country make perfect sense, when you understand that I am a very serious personal threat to the reputation Prime Minister of Samoa. I explain why. Enjoy!

 

For those wanting it plain and simple or  don’t want to read through wades of ‘stuff’, basically this is it:

I lived in Samoa for seven years. The Prime Minister of Samoa was initially helpful and wanted to spend a lot of time with the newbie Palagi (white man) but the novelty wore off after a year or two; we had a tiff over a breach of contract on his part; I went away for a few years with my tail between my legs doing voluntourism and a backpackers, then in 2015 having had enough, wrote a book called “Corruption in Samoa” then gave a copy of it to him. He saw red over something personal about his inappropriate relationship with one of his “close” CEOs. He said a few angry, stupid things (like, “You’ve got a lot to learn about Samoa!”) and threatened to sue me. I stood up to him, told him that he was rude to a guest in his country and that it was HIM who had a lot to learn about me! Then a year or so later he booted me out of the country on a technicality – overstaying, although at the time I was a legitimate visitor and he had to break Samoa’s own laws to do it!

That’s the gist of it.

THE JUICY BIT

There’s a lot more to it which will come out in due course but for those who only want the juicy bits, the inappropriate relationship I mentioned in the book Corruption in Samoa relates to the PM and the CEO of STA (Samoa Tourism Authority), Papalii [her title name] Sonja Hunter. The PM in Samoa is Kong Kong and can easily handle the constant stream of corruption revealed within his bureaucrats, he’s done that for years, but he didn’t like it when knowledge of his close [extra-marital] relationship with a CEO was being spoken about, or more correctly had the potential to be spoken about outside of his sphere of direct influence.*

The vast majority of Samoans on-island, certainly those connected, know of this inappropriate relationship, and many in the villages do too. I explain in the book a lot more but Tui has the ultimate power over there, so nobody can say anything about it. They don’t, except in hushed voices. They are generally ALL shocked and horrified that ‘The Palagi’ knows. It’s a fully universal reaction over there when I asked questions and talked about it with them over the last five years. My take on this is that this fact is a source of HUGE embarrassment to the people of Samoa. To a man, they consider their country founded upon God, and for their leader to be shown as a man with questionable morals destroys their deluded self-image of righteousness that they treasure so much. In fact they don’t give two hoots what he (or anyone actually) does but they DO care about if there is shame resulting!

I don’t give too hoots either about people mucking around if they want to screw up their marriage that way, that’s their choice, but I paid a heavy price because of Tui’s conduct – Sonja torpedoed a project that the PM instructed SWAP to proceed with and that has cost us (and me) virtually everything I owned. The details of that sorry saga, where Tui covered for ‘his girl’, ended up in the book Corruption in Samoa. He’s p*ssed, big-time and saw his chance to get rid of me. He has.

So, now you know!

The PM didn’t resolve the matters ethically, essentially giving me the single finger salute. That was wrong. It was immoral. It was illegal and a commercial breach of contract. He’s attempted to justify his position using excuses that sound plausible but I don’t take BS from anyone, even if he’s King Kong in Samoa. Some people who rip me off get away with it but many I hold to account. I tried to warn Tui (and that’s what he asked me to call him when I asked him) that I was fearless to speak the truth, and because I don’t play games, I am ALWAYS ready to pay the price, even the ultimate one. He lives, eats and breathes in the world of politics which is essentially a game. He didn’t listen, probably because he can’t.

I’ve paid the price, and left Samoa on the 5th of September 2016 with the clothes I was walking in, my cellphone & charger and my notebook computer. I can never go back. Even if I was allowed back, or even paid to go back, I CAN never, for unless I got a VERY public apology and a clear Prime Ministerial promise of protection I would be certainly lynched or probably ferried back to New Zealand for burial. No I am not joking – Samoans are like that over there, especially if you cause them shame, and that, I do seemingly by simply existing.

It took me six years to find someone who could tell me the Samoan word for ‘sorry’ – they use the English word instead! They don’t say sorry, ever, because they are never sorry, they cannot be, for to admit error for would be culturally abhorrent – it would bring shame on the family and the village and the country. So they instead all end up fighting for a lie, and paying the price, like an Ostrich. For a truthseeker and a truth-speaker Samoa is not the place to be!

Thus we’d be waiting for hell to freeze over before the PM would ever apologise.

So this is the background to a Blogger who got Banned.

IMMIGRATION BACKGROUND

The important history goes back to my first application for a work permit in Samoa. I’m currently doing this all from memory as I have no documents with me (of course!) but it was made within 60 days of my arrival in Samoa as a visitor as I will have applied and was granted a permit to comply with all appropriate laws. On reapplication however, when I informed the Immigration staff that I was the CEO of a Charitable Trust and that I did not pay myself (I essentially self-funded, living off capital throughout my stay) this caused Immigration a problem for they required a JOB or a BUSINESS in order to issue a work permit.

I obtained a Work Permit under my company at the time Gold Tick Services Ltd (a Samoan company with a valid FIC – Foreign Investment Certificate) and everyone was happy. My passport was endorsed appropriately to work for my company. The same issue arose again when applying for another Work Permit. “We’ve been through this before Dennis. We know that you are CEO of a Charitable Trust but we need to have a JOB or a BUSINESS to grant you a Work Permit!” So again we did the same – no problem! This was now twice that my voluntary role as the CEO of a Charitable Trust (that took the vast bulk of my time, energy and resources) was not acceptable for  a Work Permit.

In Q1 2016 I went to Immigration asking for the forms to renew my Work Permit. I knew that it had expired and I wanted to sort the matter out. They gave me the forms but then on 20 April 2016 at 10.32am Immigration emailed me stating that I had to leave the country as my permit had expired. [i.e. I was an overstayer]

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I did that within 36 hours, departing on 21st April 2016 at the first available opportunity and well within Samoa Immigration’s compliance request.

When I returned from American Samoa, I returned as a visitor, granted a 60 days visitor’s visa. This is covered in Section 12 of the Samoa Immigration Act 2004.

I didn’t have a Work Permit obviously so was granted re-entry automatically (there’s no need to apply for a visitor visa to Samoa) on a VISITOR Visa, for as a New Zealand Citizen travelling on a NZ Passport, I was permitted to stay up to 60 days. I knew this very well and was VERY careful NOT to conduct any business related to my employment. The law is clear. I read, understand obey the law. It says:

12. Visitor Permit – (1) For the purposes of this Act, and subject to this Act, a Visitor Permit is a permit to enter Samoa once or more often (as determined by the Minister) during the currency of the permit and to remain in Samoa for a period up to a maximum of 60 days as determined by the Minister.

(2) A Visitor Permit shall be granted only to a person entering Samoa:
(a) as a tourist; or
(b) for religious or cultural purposes; or
(c) for family re-union or family support purposes; or
(d) for business purposes; or
(e) for the purpose of accompanying a person entering Samoa under this subsection.

(3) Save where a person has been granted an Entry Permit to undertake employment in Samoa in accordance with Part 8, a person granted a Visitor Permit shall not undertake employment in Samoa during the period in which the person is in Samoa.

(4) A Visitor Permit shall only be granted to a person who is able to establish to the satisfaction of the Minister that the person:
(a) is of good health and character; and
(b) has met or will meet, as the case may require, any eligibility criteria determined by the Minister by Notice. [my bolding]

So you can conduct business but not employment on a visitor’s visa. My company Club Samoa Ltd, which was the previous company I had been granted a Work Permit for I had long suspended, and my role as CEO of the SWAP Foundation had twice previously been deemed not “Work” for the purposes of the Immigration Act – so I was clean in these regards, or so I thought!

I departed Samoa for a second time on the 12th May 2016, and for a third time departed Samoa on the 14th July 2016, which permitted me (certainly under normal circumstances) to stay in Samoa as a visitor for 60 days up until 14th September 2016.

This was acknowledged by Samoa Immigration who on 29 July 2016, said:

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by mx.google.com with ESMTPS id c2si1239784itb.48.2016.07.28.19.44.40
(version=TLS1_2 cipher=ECDHE-RSA-AES128-GCM-SHA256 bits=128/128);
Thu, 28 Jul 2016 19:44:41 -0700 (PDT)

Anyways, we understand that you are currently residing on a valid visitor permit of 60 days due to expire on 15-09-2016.

DISHONESTY & DELIBERATE INTENT

But . . . none of this seems to have mattered in the slightest to the Prime Minister, for on 1st September 2016, Samoa Immigration issued a STOP ORDER to all inbound transport operators preventing me from returning to Samoa.

I was now banned, and even though I didn’t know it at the time, everyone in Samoan Immigration knew this, and probably multiple government departments as well. I have a letter from a second government department again on the 1st of September 2016, so there was clearly a plan being hatched on and before this date.

This date is important for it shows prior intent to mislead and dishonest conduct (certainly obnoxious to a Palagi), that anyone familiar to the Samoan ways will know and understand. More on this in a moment.

Here is what I know and can prove thus far. I overstayed in Samoa between the expiry of my third Work Permit that expired in 2015 and 21st April 2016 when I left Samoa. I came and went three times from Samoa from 21st April 2016 until September 2016, each time returning as a visitor, supposedly complying with Immigration’s requirements and as acknowledged by Samoa Immigration in writing. I complied with the conditions of a visitor’s permit and was VERY careful to do so.

While I was in Samoa culminating in the events of 1st September, behind my back and without my knowledge, I was banned. This act of banning is not just the prerogative of the Samoa Immigration, it is the Minister. Note these clauses which make it abundantly clear that not only is it the Minister who has the power, it is power totally independent of the Judiciary.

19. Limitation of rights accruing to applicants for and holders of Entry Permits – Subject to the Constitution and this Act and despite the provisions of any other law:(1) Any person who applies for or is the holder of an Entry Permit, other than the holder a Permanent Resident Permit, shall not have any right or entitlement to:
(a) the grant of an Entry Permit; or
(b) challenge or seek review or bring any other legal proceedings whatsoever, including but not limited to any prerogative writ or judicial review, in any Court concerning:
(i) the grant or denial of an Entry Permit; or
(ii) the cancellation of an Entry Permit; or
(iii) the imposition of any term or condition for any Entry Permit granted under this Act.

(2) The Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court and the District Court shall not have the power or jurisdiction to make any decision or order concerning or touching upon any matter under subsection (1)(a) or (b).

That’s for PR (Permanent Residency). Now to Visitor & Temporary Residency. Again I have bolded critical parts:

20. Cancellation of Visitor and Temporary Resident Permits – (1) A Visitor Permit or a Temporary Resident Permit is cancelled if the person granted such permit:
(a) fails to enter Samoa within any period specified in such permit; or
(b) is convicted in Samoa or elsewhere of any offence nominated by the Minister by Notice and has not received a free pardon,

and such person shall, if in Samoa, depart from Samoa forthwith.

(2) A Visitor Permit and a Temporary Resident Permit may be cancelled by the Minister if the Minister is satisfied on reasonable grounds that the person granted the permit:
(a) provided false or misleading or incomplete information as part of the person’s application for such permit; or
(b) has contravened sections 12(3) or 13(3); or
(c) has breached any of the terms and conditions attached to such permit; or
(d) has acted in a manner inconsistent with the person’s stated purpose in being in Samoa or that the circumstances under which the permit was granted no longer apply; or
(e) has acted in a manner which is detrimental to the peace, order or good governance of Samoa or which is detrimental to the well being of Samoa, or
(f) is without sufficient lawful means of support for the person or any of the person’s dependants; or
(g) where the person has an Entry Permit to undertake employment, such employment has ceased.

(3) Where a permit is cancelled under this section the Minister shall cause to be served on the person a written Notice to this effect.

(4) The Notice under subsection (3) shall:
(a) be in Samoan or English; and
(b) state under which provision of this Act the Minister has acted; and
(c) advise the person that if the decision to cancel the permit was made by an Officer, the person may appeal the cancellation to the Minister in writing; and
(d) advise the person that any appeal made under paragraph (c) does not suspend the operation of the cancellation.

(5) Upon receipt of an appeal under subsection (4) (c) the Minister shall review the decision of the Officer and may:
(a) confirm such cancellation; or
(b) cancel such cancellation.

(6) Under subsection (5)(b) the Minister may impose such terms and conditions on the permit as the Minister deems appropriate.

(7) Upon the Minister determining an appeal under subsection (5) the Minister shall cause to be served on the person the subject of the appeal a Notice advising the Minister’s decision.

(8) If the Minister’s decision under subsection (5) is to confirm the cancellation, the person shall depart from Samoa forthwith and any failure by the person to do so shall be grounds for the person’s immediate deportation.

Immigration is a FULLY POLITICAL matter, explicitly written into law. There is no justice, nor appeal nor legal process outside of the Minister.

And the Minister of Immigration is . . . ? Have a guess!

Now we enter into the murky world of he said/she said and what DIDN’T happen. While discussing my pending application to stay in Samoa (as I had in the meantime married a local girl) I asked Siaopo twice (Siaopo is the new ACEO Immigration) and Talifaia once (she is Siaopo’s off-sider in the permits section) whether the Minister was involved. Twice Siaopo and once Talifaia vigorously denied his involvement.

Hmmmm!

They lied, for as you can see it is the Minister who cancels permits (evicts) and alone has the authority. I kept on asking whether the Minister was involved because, guess what . . . I knew that if he had his nose in the situation he could easily “get back” at the Palagi who was a potential problem to him by exposing his immorality in the book. I’m not stupid, and was actually EXPECTING trouble from above. I didn’t know when or how of course but it would have been no surprise to me if the Old Man was involved.

Now there was more than one communication that occurred, written and in person. At all times Siaopo and Talifaia presented themselves as kind and friendly and supposedly wanting to help. “Put the application in for a Temporary Permit on marital/family grounds and it will take 10 days to process” – no worries sort of thing. This was shortened to 5 days in the end, so I booked a flight back to Samoa for five days on Saturday the 10th September 2016 as agreed.

My wife said something that intrigued me later on. Siaopo had walked out of his office and spoke in Samoan to Talifaia, “Why did you tell him it was only five days?” along the lines that they knew something that they were not letting on. We all know now what it was, for the previous day Siaopo, the ACEO of Samoa Immigration had informed all transport companies in writing that I was banned from Samoa! Yup the plot . . .

Nice eh?

Such betrayal indicates fear. Fear of eyeballing a Palagi. Fear of speaking the truth, AND most of all, fear of putting any blame on the Minister. Samoans lie like this so that they don’t cause shame. Shame is essentially fear of man.

As I have said previously, I have no fear of anybody including the Prime Minister of Samoa who is too gutless to man up to the Palagi who wrote the book Corruption in Samoa and named and shamed him for the hypocrite that he is!

An interesting side issue is that Samoa Immigration in showing two sides, one to the transporters and another to us, is that they failed to obey their own laws, because as you can see in the law, such banning MUST be by notice, with reasons and an opportunity to appeal. They didn’t give notice and are thus exposed – legally as well as morally. I reserve the right to take this matter further and give notice here that one who uses the law to gain political benefit cannot cry foul when those that suffer from their use of the same laws turned back upon them.

Mr Prime Minister, Tuila’epa, you ‘shot’ a Palagi, but because you didn’t do it according to the law, you shot yourself in the foot at the same time, and I have here just shown the evidence.

There’s a lot more to this story that will potentially come out in court or in printed or online format which will embarrass Samoa and Samoans when they find out what actually happens up there, but this is the basics.

Moving on then, my wife and I completed and paid for an application for temporary residency as discussed and advised to do by the ‘very helpful’ Samoan Immigration people, but secretly knowing they were screwing up the lives of a newly married cross-cultural marriage.

REFUSED TEMPORARY RESIDENCY

Here is the document supplied to my wife Veve by immigration that informs her that my application under Section 13 (2) (f) of the Samoa Immigration Act 2004 is denied. This Section of the act says:

13. Temporary Resident Permit – (1) For the purposes of this Act and subject to this Act, a Temporary Resident Permit is a permit to enter Samoa and re-enter Samoa during the currency of the permit and to remain in Samoa up to a maximum of three years.

(2) A Temporary Resident Permit shall be granted only to person entering Samoa for:
(a) the conduct of business in Samoa;
(b) employment in Samoa; or
(c) study in Samoa; or
(d) academic or scientific research in Samoa; or
(e) a cultural or religious purpose; or
(f) a family re-union or family support purpose; or
(g) a purpose approved by the Minister; or
(h) the purpose of accompanying a person entering under this subsection.

(3) Save where a person has been granted an Entry Permit to undertake employment in Samoa in accordance with Part 8, a person granted a Temporary Resident Permit shall not undertake employment in Samoa during the period in which the person is in Samoa.

(4) A Temporary Resident Permit shall be granted only to a person who is able to establish to the satisfaction of the Minister that the person:
(a) is of good health and character; and
(b) has met or will meet, as the case may require, any eligibility criteria determined by the Minister by Notice. [my bolding]

Sounds pretty straight-forward. Palagi marries local gal. Applies to Immigration to stay, love and support her and the three kids. Plans to have a Samoan family and live happily ever-after in Paradise . . . yeah right!

The letter my wife received from Samoa Immigration states quite clearly that the grounds for declining my application are breach of an overstaying clause, Section 18 which says:

18. Duty to depart Samoa prior to expiry of Entry Permit- (1) Subject to this Act, the holder of an Entry Permit shall depart from Samoa prior to the expiry of such permit.

(2) Any person who contravenes subsection (1) commits an offence.

This is correct. I twice overstayed. By the strict letter of the law Samoa Immigration may have every right to refuse me Temporary Residency, no matter the inhumanity of it all; the fact that my wife and young family have lost their husband; a decision made by a Minister hiding behind frightened Immigration staff; a man who knows that the book Corruption in Samoa will eventually be coming out with his reputation tarnished by scandal; or the fact that I had come and gone quite legitimately several times since.

The Blogger may be Banned but the truth will out!

One really has to wonder why any Samoan overstayer in New Zealand should be granted any grace eh?

My situation has also all the markings of a trip to the International Human Rights commission. Corruption, lack of due process, court action threatened against the government, a book exposing corruption and personal embarrassment to the PM, a lack of due process within Samoa by the Minister, inability to attend major court cases in Samoa, a very real danger to my physical safety even if the ban was now lifted and a wife and family denied their father . . . HOLY COW!!!

MITIGATION

Samoans lie, especially when their honour is at risk. I don’t. I can confess to errors or mistakes I make any time thus have no need (nor wish) to lie. So how would these goons get out of their pickle?

The first thing Samoa Immigration or the PM could do is to say that this was the Immigration department’s decision not the PM’s. This is a tactic the PM uses frequently which is called plausible deniability. In Samoa plausible deniability is just bunkum. Tuila’epa is the boss. Everything comes from him or is signed off by him. I have the proof that this potential lie is not the case and that the PM knew about my banning. He was the source of it! The law is clear that it is HIS responsibility to handle such matters. If he didn’t then he abdicated his duties and one of his staff broke the law.  He knew and I can show beyond all reasonable doubt that he knew and the decision was his. I deliberately haven’t shown this evidence here though.

Secondly there could be claims that due process was followed, that I was advised of my banning but that I chose not to appeal the Minister. The date of the letter to transport operators is critical – the 1st September 2016. Samoa Immigration knew that the Minister had declared me a Prohibited Immigrant on or before this date. Due process requires notification but that never occurred. Immigration tricked my wife and I knowing that the Minister had declared me a Prohibited Immigrant. It is a crime for a Prohibited Immigrant to lodge an application. Neither Veve nor I knew that I was a Prohibited Immigrant and we placed an application under the guidance and advice and encouragement of Samoa Immigration officials Siaopo (ACEO) and Talifaia (Permits). Both of these individuals aided and abetted a crime on Veve and my parts by concealing the true situation – that I was a Prohibited Immigrant. They cannot say that I knew that I was a Prohibited Immigrant when they were actively tricking both Veve and me into an easy departure and an application that they knew would be denied! There is no excuse when the facts are seen clearly. Due process did not occur.

Thirdly it could be claimed that I had done other ‘bad’ things and it justified such serious action. The letter to my wife alludes to this when it says that I “violated the conditions of [my] previous permits issued in 2013” but doesn’t detail it. These are weasel-words designed to obfuscate. There is nothing that they didn’t know about. As I have not received any notice or justification, I do not know what those ‘bad’ things may be. They are so secretive that they weren’t even detailed to my wife! She has/had to go into Immigration to get the details and this would likely be anything but a written contestable claim based on fact.

To my mind there is no mitigation possible. The PM told his people to get rid of me; they used the excuse that I was a belated overstayer from seven months and three years previously as the pretense, then lied to trick me out of the country and locked the door. Bugger the consequences at a human level OR due process!

They may say that the banning order was issued long beforehand and that they were gracious in allowing me to stay until 5 September 2016. Nonsense! Why didn’t they stop me at the border when I returned prior to the 30 April 2016 deadline to depart? And what about the two other times I departed and returned to stay legal? If I was a Prohibited Immigrant earlier then how come I was doing everything right and not getting deported in short order? Even if they do say the banning order was earlier it still doesn’t change the fact that their notice to the transport companies occurred a day before being told to leave and being advised to make application and wait 10 (or 5) days for a decision, when they knew the full story!

ANALYSIS

Samoa Immigration has lied to both Veve my wife and me to cover for the Minister who has booted the Blogger out of Samoa. Apart from the strategic stupidity of p*ssing off an effective blogger with a million words to his credit; a resident of Samoa for seven years and recently married to a Samoan citizen, the Prime Minister has taken a personal conflict to another level, effectively upping the stakes in a battle I believe which is clearly between good and evil. I’m not claiming that I am perfect nor that the PM doesn’t do ANY good, what I am saying is that the PM has done wrong, and I am holding him to account. I’m doing that because first, the people of Samoa deserve to have a leader who CAN be held to account – I can and am doing that, and secondly because he did something wrong that cost me dearly (covering up for his ‘girl’ who has a serious attitude towards me). There is another reason but that is a matter of faith so I will leave this out for this post. His response is to do evil. Mine is to do good.

Tuila’epa is a proud man, a skilled politician but one whose entire role in life appears to be covering for his peoples’ indiscretions. He is not trusted and many do not like his style, one of arrogance in the face of criticism. The ultimate in shame is for a Palagi (like me) to come into Samoa and speak ill of him, their political leader, but I stand for truth, not Samoan lies and BS.

Samoa is a corrupt country well known within the circles that it engages with as a country where extreme nepotism is the norm; greed and self-interest abound and the Prime Minister sits at the top of the pack. His banning of a Blogger is a feel-good act for him and for those that felt uncomfortable being watched and spoken about.

Chief amongst the cheerleaders over this act will be his ‘girl’ Sonja at the STA. She is the one who most of all resented my presence in Samoa. If ever anyone was threatened by my presence in Samoa it was Sonja. She will likely be ecstatic, as will other corrupt, racist and arrogant leaders of society over my eviction, that is until she learns of what will be happening and how much of her conduct will be getting out there into the wider world.

Chief among those who will be crying over the Minister’s heartless act of attempted self-preservation will be little Tulily, my three year old step daughter who for the first time in her short life experienced what it was like to have a father and a dad; Benjamin, my seven year old step-son who loved having a father for the first time that he could run up to and hug, laugh and have fun with; Harry the sophisticated young ten year old Samoan boy who was the default leader of the family until I arrived and who spoke the best English of all to his new step-father. Let’s not also forget my wife Veve who trusted me to bring her family into my fold, who took my name and dedicated herself to the Palagi, because she wanted to, only to find her new husband gone in a flash, never to return.

Thank you Tuila’epa & Samoa Immigration for forcing me to rebuild my life back in New Zealand but no thanks to you and the Minister for f*cking up others’ lives like you have. Let the truth be known about how Samoa REALLY works, behind the scenes in politics!

THE FUTURE

I am a survivor. We’re told that when life dishes you up lemons, we should learn to make lemonade. That I am doing.

I now publish the book Corruption in Samoa. It was written in 2015. It shows the world the true nature of Samoa and the Samoan leadership under the current Prime Minister, Tuila’epa. It’s all factual and when I’m passing opinion I think it’s well reasoned and accurate. People, particularly Samoans off-island thank me for standing up for the little people.

The good ones are ashamed at the conduct of their leaders back home, but feel powerless to do anything about it. I hope and pray that my example of first speaking the truth; then losing all; then getting booted out when I took on the worst of the worst (the one at the top where the buck stops) will motivate others to stand up for what is right, good, proper and godly.

Samoa has a great message – it’s people and culture are special and I care about them, but unfortunately when greed, lies and self-interest get in the way however it turns its ugly side to us outsiders in seconds. Tuila’epa has shown this side of Samoans to the world with this cowardly act.

Banning the Blogger from Samoa has caused personal loss to me (you can see the devastation wrought on Camp Samoa upon my departure, literally five years of my hard physical labour in the Samoan sun all destroyed in the photo above) but it has simply opened the doors to greater exposure of Samoa to the people of New Zealand, and through the web, to the world. If the Samoans (and others interested in Samoa) do the right thing, then my banning could be one of the best things that ever happened to me, and perhaps maybe of some benefit to Samoa.

Shame on Samoa’s Prime Minister, Tuila’epa, and those close to him to supported the act of banning.

This has been a big post. Thank you for reading it. I trust you are more informed of the circumstances surrounding my banning from Samoa now, and that this brings greater understanding and good things!

 

* Tuila’epa has incredible political control on-island but has lessening degrees of control of Samoans born and brought up off-shore the further they are removed from Samoan politics and control systems. Depending on the closeness of their links back home they may despise him openly or be under his indirect influence and thus compliant. This has nothing to do with party politics or ideology it is all relational family power games at a logal government level and sometimes party politics at a national level. For example a very high profile Auckland-based lawyer well-known at taking on anyone who gets in the way of justice cannot touch anything to do with Tuila’epa because he is [ a senior Matai in our family; related to; or whatever] – you get the picture. Just one word from a Matai in Samoa to a family member offshore and you have the power-systems influence thought and actions of the ‘little’ people very quickly.

 
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