ANOTHER LEGAL CHALLENGE WITHDRAWN IN SAMOA ELECTIONS, EIGHT REMAIN

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APIA, Samoa (April 29, 2001 – Radio Australia)---Another legal challenge to a general election result in Samoa has been withdrawn, leaving eight cases to be dealt with by the Supreme Court.

After the March 2 election, petitions were filed against 10 of the winners, who were accused by their rivals of bribing voters.

One of the losing candidates, Laupua Sili, withdrew his petition against current Public Works Minister Faumuina Liuga.

Laupua's lawyer said the two agreed that the decision was in the best interests of justice and national unity.

The first election petition now will be heard before the court this week.

The seats of five parliamentary under secretaries are under threat from petitions, which could possibly change the makeup of Parliament.

The Human Rights Protection Party currently holds a seven-seat majority

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to Pacific Islands Report News/Information Links: radio/TV news/Radio Australia.

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