15 October 2018
Letter to the Editor
So you thought tax for church ministers is a “Bullying tactics, church, desperation and hypocrites” as you had editorialised?
So you think Mr. Editor the CCCS church ministers, who are earning very very high incomes, should continue to be treated diﬀerently from the rest of the taxpayers in Samoa, and give them an exceptional utmost above all else courtesy in the country?
If the Paramount Chiefs in Samoa are standing before the court in the country, and you think the CCCS church ministers can still get away with paying taxes and continued on to use the infrastructures free is a fair deal Mr. Editor?
So you think Sir, the CCCS church ministers are above the law in Samoa while in any other countries in the civilised world, the church and priests are paying taxes?
I had thought all along you ﬁght for democracy and now I have my doubts about your ethos Mr Editor.
The Honourable Prime Minister of Samoa had warned all church ministers about the power of the tax law many many many times. And yet, the CCCS church ministers do not heed the call for so long and now you think Sir, the government being a bully, desperate and so forth?
The Honourable Minister of Revenue did the same. The government even delayed the implementation date for the CCCS church ministers to get their acts together and yet, you called my government bully?
I also Sir, in so many times in these pages had tried to explain the power of a tax law and the procedures a government would expedite to recover taxes owing by a taxpayer.
I mentioned herein about garnishee orders the government will issue for the banks to deduct any money owing by a taxpayer, from their (CCCS church ministers) bank accounts. Now this is happening and you are not being fair to my government. This is the government for the people by the people Sir.
All the things happening now including the government also has the power to put a caveat on any freehold lands or properties owned by a taxpayer, and if taxes are not paid, then my government had to recoup taxes owing, then my government has the power by law to sell the properties.
Please Mr. Editor note, this is not just an HRPP Samoa government procedure but tax laws all over the world. Remember Sir the long arm of the law parlance? This is it.
And in regards to Samoa, just like in any country, no one is above the law nor being treated diﬀerently whether a church minister, a Paramount Chief, man woman etc. etc.
My government has been patient for far too long and is doing what is best for every citizen of Samoa to help develop our country. This is a progressive Samoa po’o le Samoa vaela’ala’a ua tatou iai.
It is the Samoa of self reliance that is no longer a Least Develop Country. Most of the free handouts from foreign donors are concentrated in other struggling countries in the world and Samoa is let go oﬀ the end of line.
My government had enough. Time for talking is over. It is time for my government to act so it is not a laughing stock of the world.
Especially, a day before the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa 2018 annual conference had ﬁnished, its General Secretary took a public roadshow making silly comments the church will discuss the tax delicate issue in their next year’s meeting.
Why was it not dealt with in the 2018 Agenda? Does the CCCS think my government is an idiot?
And now you are calling my government a bully a desperado and hypocrites Mr. Editor? This is sad. This is very very sad from he who always fought for being fair and writing about democracy here, democracy there and democracy everywhere but now, is contrary to have bitten the tongue.
You Mr. Editor and the CCCS church ministers are playing with ﬁre and soon, you will get burnt however now, the CCCS church ministers will face the full brunt of the law to treat all, the same. If it’s good enough for anyone to stand before the court, and so as a CCCS church minister.
My government has given far too many opportunities and no more; enough is enough. Please stop this nonsensical garbage. There is no one to blame but the CCCS church ministers who are not wanting to oﬀer support to develop Samoa.
I have found your editorial Mata’afa Keni Lesa being one eyed with not balanced at all; none or whatsoever.
With my utmost disgust,
Tofaeono Misātauveve Iosefo Joseph Hollywood.