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By Lewis Wolman

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (September 26, 2000 - Samoa News/PINA Nius Online)---In contrast to the gubernatorial campaign that has been raging for several months, serious campaigning has yet to begin in American Samoa's Congressional race. There three familiar challengers are seeking to prevent incumbent Eni Faleomavaega from winning a seventh consecutive term as American Samoa’s delegate to the U.S. Congress in Washington.

With less than two months until Election Day, Faleomavaega holds a wide lead over his challengers, according to the Election 2000 poll conducted by the Samoa News.

The poll conducted by American Samoa Community College students - with a margin of error of plus/minus 4% - returned the following results:

Faleomavaega Eni: 57%; Gus Hannemann: 19%; Aumua Amata Coleman: 10%; Seigafolava Pene: 3%; Undecided: 11%.

When the "undecideds" are removed from the results, the numbers change as follows: Faleomavaega Eni: 64%; Gus Hannemann: 21%; Aumua Amata Coleman: 11%; Seigafolava Pene: 4%

In addition to the 11% of the respondents who were "undecided," another 14%indicated that they might change their mind before Election Day.

Thus it appears that at least 25% of the voters are not yet sure who they will cast their vote for on November 7. The challengers may be able to garner enough support to force a runoff election, especially once they fire up their campaigns after long absences away from Tutuila and Manu’a.

In 1996, Amata and Hannemann garnered enough votes to prevent Faleomavaega from getting more than 50% of the votes on the General Election Day (he fell less than 50 votes short from the 11,394 votes cast). Hannemann outpolled Amata by 300 votes and earned the chance to go head-to-head against Eni in the runoff, which Eni won.

In 1998, neither Amata nor Hannemann was on the ballot and Faleomavaega defeated Seigafolava by a very wide margin.



By La Poasa

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (September 28, 2000 - Samoa News/PINA Nius Online)---A large group of family members, friends and supporters of Congressman Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin showed up at Utulei Beach to help him kick off his reelection campaign.

Faleomavaega is seeking election in November for his seventh consecutive term as American Samoa’s delegate to the U.S. Congress in Washington.

Faleomavaega also gave the opportunity to local gubernatorial candidate Rosalia Tisa Fa’amuli to say a few words.

Faleomavaega told his kick-off assembly that although Tisa does not hold a matai title, women are referred to in the Samoan society as "tama sa," which indicates that they are sacred people.

"She made a serious and difficult decision to run for this important office and I appreciate and honor her for having made that commitment," the Congressman said of her bid for governor.

Tisa, as always, reminded the crowd of the "importance of our environment because it is our future."

She said that she may not be a orator but she is a hard working woman who treasures the beauty of the Territory and who tries to share that beauty with people from all over the world.

"We may not have a lot of money but we are millionaires in our lands," she pointed out. "I urge you to look behind you from where you came from, look forward to where we are heading, look at both sides.

"We owe it to ourselves to keep our lands clean, for our future, for the future of American Samoa," she continued.

Master of Ceremonies, HTC Maluia Filoitumua, reminded the audience that the season of campaigning is in full swing now and it brings with it all kinds of atmosphere including tension created by persons criticizing one another.

"The situation worsens when the criticisms do not develop into solutions for the problems being criticized."

Maluia pointed out that criticisms have grown to the finger-pointing stage.

"We must remember that when we point fingers to others, there’s only one finger pointing to them while several are pointing at you, which means you’ve also got a problem," explained Maluia.

Whatever decision each voter makes on Election Day should be done with the reliance of the Lord, "because He will show the way."

Congressman Faleomavaega advised the audience that when they make their decisions in November, make sure they are their own individual decisions and not the decisions of others.

He added that they should be aware of those who won’t mind their own business. These are people who create problems for others by trying to find out who is supporting whom and then gossiping about what they find out.

"Let the person make his or her own choices. Don’t get mad with each other," advised the Congressman.

Faleomavaega acknowledged the other three candidates running for Congress - Aumua Amata Radewagen, Seigafolava Robert Pene and Gus Hannemann - for their willingness and devotion to serve the people of American Samoa.

"Whoever you vote for in November - that is your choice!" he reiterated. "Whoever Tutuila and Manu’a choose to seat as Congressman, I will support."

The Aoelua Sisters from Aua, Young Women from the LDS Aua 1st Ward and the Catholic Youth from Malaeloa provided entertainment for the two-hour event.

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

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: 

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