Alleged seizure of hard drive “abuse of authority” says HRPP leader


Leader of the HRPP, Tuilaepa Dr Sailele Malielegaoi, has raised concerns over the alleged seizure of the Director General’s computer drive by the Public Service Commission as an “abuse of authority.” 

In a statement issued by the Human Rights Protection Party following their press conference today, Tuilaepa expressed concerns over the actions by the Government that clearly gives rise to abuse of individual rights.

Earlier this week, Radio Polynesia reported the PSC seized the hard drive from the Health Director-General’s computer when Leausa Dr Take Naseri was overseas on medical leave.

This is in connection to a Cabinet ordered PSC investigation into the delay in procuring the computerized tomography or CT scanner for the hospital.

It is alleged the hard drive contained deleted emails that led to allegations of collusion and the “discovery of a middle man” in relation to the tendering process of the CT scanner in November 2020.

Repeated efforts to get comments from the Chair of the PSC, Lauano Vaosa Epa were unsuccessful.

Tuilaepa, says this is the start of the erosion of good governance principles of transparency and accountability which gives effect to the Rule of Law.

“It is an abuse of authority when those accused of wrongdoing are not given the opportunity to answer allegations,” said Tuilaepa.

“This is why the Human Rights Protection Party was established in 1979 and the reason for the name adopted for our Political Party, because of the way the government of the day was not upholding the rights of the individual.”

He says it appears the Government is doing the same thing, by refusing to give officials the opportunity to answer allegations against them.

Adding the alleged removal by PSC officials of a hard drive from the Ministry of Health which “is setting dangerous precedence that threatens job security.

“Only the court has the authority to allow invasion of privacy and access to private information. There does not seem to be any more privacy,” he said.

“This is a grave situation and is a reflection of a government that does not operate under the rule of law,” said the former Prime Minister.