Samoa to take John Campbell to the High Court

Samoa plans to take TV3’s John Campbell to the High Court in a continuing battle over how tsunami relief funds were spent. Prime Minister Tuila’epa Sailele complained to the Broadcasting Standards Authority over a story on New Zealand’s TV3

Samoa complained after Campbell Live aired a story questioning how $59.4 million of 2009 tsunami relief money had been spent in Samoa. “This is not about being embarrassed or being vindictive,” says Tuila’epa. “The only thing the government wants is to remove the false impression that money has been misused because of misreporting.”The fact is John Campbell misreported.”

He also disliked the way Campbell had interviewed him outside a restaurant. “Those are the mannerisms of palagi (white person) who do not understand the protocols and station of a national leader.”
“His behaviour is that of a small child with no manners.”

Long time editor of the Samoa Observer Savea Sano Malifa  comments “Which is why his complaints have got to be decided by the Supreme Court of New Zealand. And let’s not worry about money, Tuilaepa assuages.  ‘Money is not an issue (here.)’ Not when it’s used to clear ‘the country’s good name’ after it’s been ‘dragged through the international mud.’ Now let’s see. How much did it cost the public in legal fees incurred in the BSA case? That would be good to know. It would show the government is indeed accountable to the public. After all, despite what Tuilaepa is advocating, money is still everything. Only those who hold the public’s purse strings don’t worry about money.”


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News category: Asia Pacific.

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