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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center

With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i


Power Issues Extend Samoa Public Servants’ Holiday Leave
Building-wide system fault reported at government office complex

By Apulu Lance Polu

APIA, Samoa (Talamua, Jan. 8, 2013) – Some public servants in Samoa are on extra holidays as they find there was no electricity to their offices at the Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi building at Sogi.

The new government office complex is a year old and cost WST$33 million [US$13.9 million]. It houses the offices for the Attorney General, the Electric Power Corporation (EPC), Samoa Water Authority, Agriculture and Fisheries, Ministry of the Environment and others.

The Ministry of Finance that manages the building says there is a problem with the main switcher, and despite electricity reaching the building, the power cannot get inside the building’s system due to the fault.

Finance had been negotiating with EPC to use one of the EPC’s imported generators to provide electricity for the building as technicians look at the fault with parts expected to arrive today from overseas.

The fault has closed the EPC and SWA offices for the payment of bills and purchase of pre paid electricity which is the only available outlet in the main town area. Customers are now forced to travel all the way to Vaitele to purchase electricity and further inland to pay water bills.

Public servants were already on two weeks end-of-year holiday break and reported to start work yesterday.

The ground floor of the building had been used by the National Disaster Committee for its strategic relief operations meetings after Cyclone Evan.

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