AMERICAN SAMOA U.S. CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE DENIED ELIGIBILITY

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PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (September 2, 1998 - Samoa News)---The Election Office has ruled that the petition filed by Aumua Amata Coleman to run as a candidate for the U.S. Congress does not qualify because it lacks the required signatures of 300 registered voters.

The deadline for petitions for candidates for the U.S. Congress and the local House of Representatives was 4:30 p.m. Tuesday (September 1, 1998).

With Aumua Amata Coleman apparently out of the Congressional race, that leaves two candidates whose petitions were approved yesterday by the Election Office.

The candidates are incumbent Congressman Eni Faleomavaega Eni and newcomer Seigafolava Pene.

Under local election law, 300 voters who are registered to vote in general elections must sign a petition in support of a candidate for that candidate to be eligible to run.

Chief Election Officer (CEO) Soliai Tuipine Fuimaono said that when Coleman's petition was submitted yesterday, the Election Office could only verify that 180 of the 300 signatures were made by registered voters. As a result, the petition was disqualified.

A spokesperson for Aumua's Campaign Committee told Samoa News last night that the officer's ruling will be challenged.

Aumua Amata Coleman, currently working in Washington as a Congressional Aid for top Republicans, is the daughter of the late former Governor Peter T. Coleman.

Stories from the SAMOA NEWS, American Samoa's daily newspaper, may not be republished without permission. To contact the publisher, send e-mail to samoanews@samoatelco.com.

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