Clean out of Samoa's beleaguered prisons continue

Samoa's Police Commissioner has started a clean out of the country's prison administration just days after he was handed the reins to the country's troubled service.

This week the Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi announced the prisons would return to the portfoilo of the Ministry of Police after a mass breakout from the multi-million dollar Tanumalala facility.

Now the Samoa Observer newspaper reports Assistant CEO for the Programme Development Service Unit, Maiava Vi'iga Fuimaono, was sacked on Friday in a move Commissioner Fuiavailili Egon Keil has called "part of changes that we're making at the prison".

"We conducted a visit at the prison and there were things that were not right, and due to the nature of the takeover, I will not hesitate to make the necessary changes," Fuiavailili said.

According to Maiava his sacking was undeserved and uncalled for adding that he was "collecting my thoughts and see where I go from here".

Fuiavailili admitted he did not have the legal authority to sack Maiava but he had initiated the proceedings to end his tenure.

36 prisoners escaped from Tanumalala on Monday, seriously injuring a number of guards in the process.

SPCS Commissioner Taitosaua Edward Winterstein resigned the next day.

"I am inheriting the prison and their many problems and therefore, I will make the changes that I see fit and lawful," said Fuiavailili.