Samoa PM refuses church pleas for tax delay

Samoa‘s Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi says the taxation of church ministers should not have been an issue at the Annual General Conference of the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa.

Samoa‘s PM Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi Photo: RNZI Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia

The fonotele is currently in progress at the church headquarters in Malua.

On his weekly radio programme, Tuilaepa pointed out that the other churches never complained about the law requiring ministers to pay taxes.

He says the act is passed and the implementation is in progress.

Tuilaepa says the church general secretary, Reverend Vavatau Taufao, wrote to him asking to postpone the passing of the Act and give the church six months to deliberate on the issue.

The Prime Minister wrote back and told him six months had already been given hence the delay in implementation.

After this week‘s church decision to reject the law, the Ministry of Revenue made public announcements for church ministers to register under the law so they can pay taxes.

While the Fonotele has rejected the law, it is not clear if they will order their ministers not to pay the taxes.

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