Last modified: 2011-02-19 by ian macdonald
Keywords: samoa | western samoa |
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Neither the 1995 Whitaker's Almanac nor the 1997 CIA Factbook
on the Internet show this change (in name). However, Samoa has a strange
constitution where upon independence there was a dual monarchy of two
traditional chiefs. One of the chiefs died in 1963 and the other continued as
the sole monarch. However, when he dies, the constitution provides that Samoa
will become a republic, with the head of state elected for a five-year term by
the legislative assembly. It is likely that this recently happened and a
formal change of name was passed to reflect the event. I do not suppose the
flag will have changed and I have never heard of a specific flag for the head
of state of Samoa.
Roy Stilling, 04 April 1998
There was a recent news item relevant to this. The legislature in American Samoa passed a bill that says the territory does
not object to the use of the title "Samoa" by Western Samoa.
John Fetzer, 04 April 1998
Other Samoan facts (from Encyclopaedia Universalis Factbook "Les Chiffres du Monde", 1998) Country name: Independent State of Samoa (formerly Independent State of Western Samoa) - Malo Sa'oloto Tuto'atasi o Samoa (formerly Malolotuto'atasi o Samoa i Sisifo) - Short form: Samoa (formerly Western Samoa - but digraph WS is still in use). In July 1997, the Legislative Assembly approved the suppression of "Western" in the country name. The country will be officially "Samoa" as soon as the Head of the state sign the amendment. As reported by Roy Stilling, the state will become a Republic after the death of the present head, Malieotea Tanumafila II, whose official title is: O le Ao o le Malo.
Flag (from Smith, 1975) The 19th century independent Kingdom
of Samoa had several flags in which red and white were predominant. The
colors were not used after 1900 when German and American colonial rules were
established. They reappeared officially, however, in the Western Samoa flag
hoisted in 1948. That design - to which a further star was added the next year
- was created by Their Highnesses Tupua Tamasese Mea'ole and Malietoa
Tanumafili II. Until 1962 when independence was achieved under United Nations trusteeship, Western Samoa flew the flag of
New Zealand at sea and , jointly with its own flag, on
land. Today (Western) Samoa's sole official flag is honored in the national
anthem, "Banner of Freedom". Its colors are generally associated
with courage (red), purity (white), and freedom (blue).
Ivan Sache, 15 July 1999