Archives for 1 June, 2017

Corruption In Samoa – Prologue

In August 2009 Taito Philip Field (a Samoan Member of Parliament in New Zealand) was imprisoned following the first-ever conviction of bribery and corruption of an MP in New Zealand. It was his corrupt conduct though that was indicative of conduct within Samoa. Back home, his corrupt activities (found illegal in NZ) simply wouldn’t have caused more than a murmur in a few of his detractors’ villages.

The difference between Samoa and many others is that Samoan corruption is blatant, the norm and unsophisticated, whereas in other countries it tends to be a lot more sophisticated. People in the West generally use legal and other systems to achieve personal benefit. Such efforts (that require serious thought and solid planning) are not the norm in the simple little South Pacific Island nation of Samoa. [Read more…]

Corruption In Samoa – Nature

Samoa has been a target of accusations of corruption forever. There is good reason for that but it’s not easy to define corruption here as cross-cultural misunderstandings abound when Palagi look at Paradise and impose their values.

While serious corruption events can be quite clear, identifying all corruption is not always a black and white matter, especially in Samoa, which as I have already explained has a very different culture from the West. [Read more…]

Corruption In Samoa – Introduction

I am asked by many of my visiting ‘Palagi’ guests whether Samoa is a corrupt country.

The answer is indeed, “Yes!” however there is much more to it than this simple acknowledgement.

Outsiders should consider two important factors before passing judgement.

1. Human nature is the same across the planet. There is no core difference between the underlying pride, racism, greed or selfishness in Samoa, New Zealand (the country of my birth), Nigeria or South Africa. People are people.

2. There are huge cultural differences between Samoa and the rest of the Western world and virtually everyone I know underestimates and fails to understand the significance of these differences. [Read more…]

Corruption In Samoa – Preface

I first visited Samoa in early October 2009, immediately following the 29th September 2009 Tsunami.

My country of birth is New Zealand and my cultural norms are middle-class Caucasian with half-Maori children. I had a solid experience in business being self-employed most of my working life, moving through technical sales roles in the office equipment, computer hardware, software, and Internet. I was essentially a self-made and successful businessman.

Third-world living conditions such as I have experienced in Samoa were not totally foreign to me having spent much time living outdoors, however the cultural shock engaging with the [to the Western mind anyway] ‘corrupt’ ways of Samoa was very serious. [Read more…]

Corruption in Samoa – Contents