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Changes at the top in Samoa

Solomona took up the position of acting President of the Federation following the passing of the late President Savae Togia Toetu Petana.
Initially elected as Vice-President in 2011, Solomona is the only remaining member of the Normalisation Committee which was responsible for turning the fortunes of the Federation around in 2008.
His involvement in football stems from his childhood, where he played for the Sogi Soccer Club as a young boy. Now he’s keen to see the game elevate to the next level in his home country.
“My aim is to develop the quality of football here in Samoa so that we are competitive within Oceania and beyond,” he says.
“To achieve this, we need to re-establish networks with players and clubs abroad to help us improve the level of football played here.”
Solomona would also like to see football reaching more rural areas of Samoa as “giving the game to the people” will help widen the talent pool.
Financial stability is another aspect of the Federation Solomona wants to focus on, especially after having been so involved following the normalisation period.
He highlights the importance of support from local business in helping improve the development of football in Samoa.
“In order to be a major competitor against other sports in Samoa, especially rugby, we need assistance from local businesses whether it be through sponsorship of our tournaments or cross promotion,” he states.
Solomona will remain acting President until the election in 2015. The vacancy on the executive committee has been filled by President of Lepea Soccer Club, Suieva Auelua.
Adding to the changes in Samoa is the departure of long-serving CEO Sarai Bareman.
Bareman has overseen the rebuilding and stabilisation of the Federation following its emergence from normalisation.
Solomona is sad to see Bareman leaving but wished her well in all future endeavours.
“Sarai’s great work has been an asset to the Federation. She has left for personal reasons and I wish her all the best.”
Taking over from Bareman is the newly appointed Faumuina Michael Kapisi who has a strong background in football as a player and executive with Moaula Soccer Club.
After working for the Ministry of Finance for almost ten years, he is keen for the new challenge working full-time in football offers.
“I’m very honoured and excited about the new role,” Kapisi says of the appointment.
“I’ll be doing something that I love and I look forward to developing the youth of Samoa, who are the future of the game.”
After playing such a large role in getting football to the current position it holds in Samoa and the region, Bareman says she will miss coming into the FFS office, but believes she’s left the Federation in good hands.
“It is with great sadness taht I say goodbye to the football family in Samoa, but it is also with great confidence, knowing that Rev. Laupama and Michael will be leading the Federation,” she says.
“Football has come a long way in the past four years, I am very proud of what we have achieved and I look forward to seeing what the future holds.”
For more on Samoan football go to www.footballsamoa.ws

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