American Samoa

Methamphetamine use at crisis levels in American Samoa

Fofo District faipule Andra Samoa said like many villages on the main island, Tutuila, her village of Leone is infested with ice, as the drug is known locally.

It has become so prevalent even elementary school children are using it, Ms Samoa said.

Dealers and users are widely known yet their operations continue with some being children of local matai, she said.

Search for American Samoan teens called off

It had been extended to midnight beyond the 72 hour search period which finished at 2pm yesterday.

The local senator Fai'ivae Iuli Alex Godinet said a big problem with the search had been the length of time getting the patrol boat to Utumea from its base at Fagatogo.

He said if there had been a boat based at nearby Leone they would have found the cousins well before the search period was up.

Fai'ivae said it may not have saved their lives but it would have given closure to the families.

Rising ocean flooding American Samoa's Aunuu

One resident, who did not want to be named said government leaders should come and see the damage for themselves.

The resident, who is a government worker, said last week the island lost power for several hours because ocean waves rolled into the area where the power generator plant is located.

Photos he took showed a road covered by rocks and debris thrown up by the sea.

The resident said people were worried about children getting caught by waves washing across the road.

North Korean 'sanction violator' arrives in American Samoa

The MV Wise Honest was stopped in Indonesia last year after it was found to be carrying coal in violation of UN sanctions.

Washington claims the 17,000 tonne ship's origin had been concealed, and it was also being used to import heavy machinery into North Korea.

The US Justice Department will investigate the ship in American Samoa's port capital of Pago Pago said the US Coast Guard's public affairs officer, Amanda Wyrick.

Seized North Korean freighter heading to American Samoa

The Wise Honest is a 17,000 tonne cargo ship which was stopped in Indonesia last year after it was found to be carrying coal in violation of UN sanctions.

On Thursday, the Justice Department asked a federal judge to give the US ownership of the vessel through a civil forfeiture action - the same process for seizing planes or boats used by drug smugglers.

The Justice Department said the US was entitled to take the action because payments to maintain and equip the vessel were made through American banks.

American Samoans to be kept out of school if not vaccinated

In December a two month old child from New Zealand was admitted to LBJ Hospital with symptoms of the disease.

The Department of Health is driving a campaign to promote immunisation after recent cases were recorded in the Northland region of New Zealand

Medical Director Joseph Tufa said parents should make sure their children are protected from the potentially deadly disease.

The department has asked parents to provide proof that their children have received the meningococcal vaccine and booster shot.

Crystal meth found in American Samoa hospital mail

KHJ News reports seven packages which tested positive for crystal methamphetamine, or ice, were found in the LBJ mail earlier this week.

The packages were addressed to various divisions of the hospital including the nursing division, the Tafuna Health Center and the Department of Health.

Hospital CEO, Faumuina John Faumuina, said one package was delivered by the Procurement Department to the Nursing Department, who returned it saying "they were not aware of such an order."

President Trump declares disaster in American Samoa

The approval will activate federal resources and assistance programmes for American Samoa, including relief packages and financial aid.

The governor, Lolo Matalasi Moliga, said the details of the declaration would be made public "soon."

As many as 500 people are still living in emergency shelters in American Samoa, three weeks after Gita swept across the islands causing extensive damage.

Frustration has been mounting among residents regarding the emergency response.

     

Price gouging concerns as American Samoa recovers from Gita

Retailers are being reminded it's illegal to raise the price of certain consumer goods by 10 percent or more after the declaration of a state of emergency.

The territory's governor, Lolo Matalasi Moliga, declared a state of emergency last Friday as the devastating winds and heavy rain from Gita began impacting the main island of Tutuila.

Soon after this reports surfaced of price gouging at some stores.

The price gouging law requires businesses to provide proof a price rise is not "unfair".

 

Photo by Pacific Roots/Twitter

     

Eight hundred still in shelters in American Samoa

Yesterday US President Donald Trump approved an emergency declaration for the territory.

RNZI reports most of the shops in the capital of Pago Pago were closed or heavily damaged.

Nearly 800 people, including elderly and children, remained in emergency accommodation.

Schools will remain closed for the whole week.

Some of the evacuees may have to be moved into churches temporarily.