Minister of Health disputes claims by President of the Samoa Nurses Association


The Minister of Health Valasi Tafito Selesele is calling out the President of the Samoa Nurses Association Solialofi Papāli’i to provide documents to substantiate her allegations that nurses’ overtime claims for the last six months have not been paid.

Papāli’i accusations aired on TV 1 last week.

According to Savali, the Minister refuted the claim that the Ministry of Health’s Human Resources Division assured him that all the nurses overtime have been paid. “I find it amusing because the nursing fraternity including Papāli’i have never informed officials and myself,” said Tafito.

“Shocked is an understatement to say the least.” Caught by surprise, Tafito is demanding a list of unpaid overtime claims with details including the names which will help officials verify if there are any unpaid overtime claims or not. “If there are claims, than they will be paid,” he assured.

Papāli’i also voiced her concerns that if these management problems are not resolved there will be a mass exit of nurses overseas for attractive severance for their services.

But the Minister countered saying that skilled and trained Samoan professionals seeking greener pastures overseas for their family security and future is an on-going challenge.

“It is not a new issue and that is the right of any individual including nurses to seek better paying jobs overseas,” refuted the Minister.

“A classical example, is the Seasonal Workers Program,” added Tafito. Before exiting the Minister issued a dare to the Samoa Nurses Association President to present a bullet proof strategy plan to prevent nurses from migrating overseas.