“Help Save Malae o Le Talu”

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Members of the Faagata family of Fagatogo led by a granddaughter of the late Sen. Faagata Mano,  Macy Faagata Woo Ching, held signs and called out, “Save Malae o le Talu”while cars honked in support this morning.

It was a peaceful demonstration against what the protestors said was the “desecration” of the Fagatogo malae, which they regard as a sacred historical place not just for their village but for American Samoa as well.

Joined by children as young as ten, Ms Faagata Woo Ching said their village was only informed that repairs will be done to the Fagatogo Pavilion, but now a good section of their malae has been cemented and their demonstration is an effort to stop the paving and restore their village malae.

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The only adult who showed up while KHJ News was at the site was Herman “Popeye” Thomsen. High Chief Pulu Ae Ae Jr of Pago Pago joined later.

About 15 minutes after the demonstration started, a police vehicle arrived and officer Annie Coffin told Mr. Thomsen to please come to the police station and explain what the demonstration was about to the Commissioner’s Office.

Coffin and another officer also told the young demonstrators to move back from the sidewalk.

KHJ News understands that the plans drawn up by Public Works for the Fagatogo Pavilion Rehabilitation includes play courts and parking, which are to be used by the village.

The contractor for the project is Pentagon Samoa Construction and the job includes the extension and reroofing of the pavilion, renovations of the bathroom facility next to the pavilion, and construction of the parking and play courts.

The project is funded by the Community Development Block Grant Program which is under the Department of Commerce.


29 Comments

  1. Maselino Mailo

    If my father or grandfather were alive, I do not think this concrete extension project in front of the pavilion would happen. I’d have to admit the current Mailo probably would not attempt to stop it or may have something to do with it’s construction. I don’t know since I do not live in Fagatogo anymore. Times have changed. There is no Fa’agata, no Lutu, and no “real” Mailo to prevent unnecessary invasion of sacred protected “Malae o le Talu” Fagatogo property. That is the problem now. No more village High Chiefs. Though I wonder where is our current village representative at? Did he have something to do with this construction?

    Reply
  2. Educate the local community about its heritage and value.

    Does the village of Fagatogo have any say?
    Does the protestors have a right to voice what they know that is history to Fagatogo Village?
    Has ASG have the right to do anything with Fagatogo village.
    First the governor took down the bake house erected the fire station by surprise. History destroyed gone.
    The historic environment is the cultural landscape of our community. It represents the historical documentation of the incremental evolution of our society and neighborhoods.
    Some people think that old, historic buildings are no need for the community and they should be destroyed and replaced with modern ones. However, other people believe that historic building must be preserved in order to know and remember our past . . . Our history is our knowledge and power.
    I do not know if the malae in Fagatogo was ever submitted to the National Register of Historic Places to be preserved. I do know there is a need to enrich the everyday experience of living and working with a sense of history, time and art. Sad though because the village of Fagatogo should work with the American Samoa Historic Preservation Office (ASHPO) to secure that.
    But still will the Fagatogo malae be preserved from being cemented or not? As we witness the bakehouse torn down.
    Perhaps ASHPO should educate the public on such?
    If submitting the Fagatogo malae to National Register of Historic Places will this preserve the Fagatogo malae. If it does who does the paper work and submits to the keeper of Historic places. Well isn’t there a historian in American Samoa Historic Office?
    Funds are allocated annually to this office to preserve physical sites otherwise, educate the community.
    The DPS commissioner, don’t know your point this morning (8/12/19) and the message being relayed to community.
    Sad to see members of this family and village of Fagatoto trying to preserve history. Come on leaders of this village and community, support the cause.
    This administration has taken away so much good valuable history with them in year 2020. There is lack of attention to our heritage!

    Educate the local community about its heritage and value.

    Reply
    1. Macy Faagata Woo Ching

      The Malaeoletalu is registered as a Historical Landmark. The concrete slab in front of the Pavilion has gone too far. The current Director of ASG Historical Preservation Office, should have advised the government that the grass area CAN NOT be touched. That’s why the Pavilion was built on the side of the Malae. When David Herdrich was the Director he made sure the entire preserved area of the Malaeoletalu was not touched.

      Reply
      1. O measina ia mo Fagatogo you fight for what you know are treasures to Fagatogo!

        Macy, you are young yet you fight for”measina” ole tatou nu’u Fagatogo.

        E mu’a le vao iate oe Macy ae tele le loto, uta male tofa e vaai mamao mo measina a tatou nu’u mo fanau ma fanau a fanau.

        Alo I ou faiva ae ia e faia ma le mata’u I le Atua. Faia le amiotonu. Ae ia e siva ,siva tausa’afia, e iloa ai o oe ole alo o le tamali’I, o le alo tama matua ia FA’AGATA.

        If the Historic Preservation Office cannot assist to protect Historic Site. What is the purpose of this office, federally funded to protect physical sites.

        Perhaps the Historic Preservation Officer/ Director is fearful of her immediate BOSS Lolo. Well I guess standing for what is right won’t pay her bills.

        Addressing what is on her job description not gonna keep her a job.
        We can’t wait till year 2020 to arrive as our leaders love of money is far valuable then preserving treasured history for Fagatogo.

        This is your identity Fagatogo come out and support the cause. It is now or never, you have rights learn of them and fight.

        Reply
  3. Fagatogo Proud

    ASG never took into consideration from the gate that this would eventually become a problem. As a Malae ole Taluan who comes home frequently to visit I too find it deeply unsettling to see the landscape of our historic village Malae and original functionality deteriorate due to government sprawl and its celebratory activities. It doesn’t need anymore add-ones!

    Reply
  4. Tinamalo Potasi

    Who makes final decisions to these matters, and if so why are’nt the village people not involved in these decisions. Do understand the government makes decisions; however, it seems like they get involve when it benefits them. What’s the impact to the village of Fagatogo? First and foremost preserving few of historical landmarks left, it’s an iconic historical landmark and people and youth of village uses the malae. Although all festivities are held in Tafuna and Utulei, Fagatogo is where it all happened. Flag Day, Seasonal festivites enjoyed by all. Praying for peaceful protest and take into consideration the history it represents. Praying for resolution that recognizes the hard work of our fore fathers enabling us to see it thus far.

    Reply
  5. Bruno, Popeye the Sailor Mans, buddy

    The Emperor strikes again! Using Federal US dollars to pave a historical malae!
    Where is the ‘elected” faipule from this District? He should be out there leading the charge! We can’t expect the Senator from this District to stand up, the gentleman is apparently to insulated from the commoners in His Village (Fagatogo) to join the demonstration.

    Simple suggestion to dig up the fresh concrete recently poured; Get a minimum of 20 signatures from Fagatogo residents, take it up to DOC and have the Director schedule a PNRS Public Hearing. While at DOC look at the land use permit for this project, there was no mention of pouring all that concrete on the Malae just for 2-3 public uses of the pavilion area a year.

    And finally…, lets hear from the candidates for governor who already have signs up around the island. Well? We are waiting to hear from you candidates.Bruno

    Reply
  6. Uhhhh?

    I wasn’t aware we needed permission to conduct demonstrations here? She has no obligation to say anything to the Commissioner or DPS – especially if it was peaceful – how is this any different than a community “wave” — it was being conducted on the sidewalk of public property – in an area that is not under the coverage of the Department of Parks and Recreation.

    Reply
  7. Save Malae O Le Talu

    This just goes to show how money/ grants are wasted. Like $100,000 that was hand given over to Manu Samoa. This Fagatogo Malae the Malae that hosted Flag Day years ago, its held mini carnival and lets not forget the people/ youth still use the Malae today. Proud of the Fagatogo youth for stepping up to save this historical Malae. Fagatogo Mayor needs to step up and define his village. You continue to let the government make decisions you will have no land for your people.

    Reply
    1. Aitu Malae

      Oe Nei a’o A’u Taeao

      Lolo se soia alu oe e sima le malae o lou nu’u. Aua le fa’aaoga ina igoa o nai faifeau e te lafi ai. Ilamutu uma o Fagatogo ma le Malaeoletalu o mai laia e fofo lelei si alii.

      Reply
  8. Macy Faagata WooChing

    Thank you so much for standing up to saved MalaeOleTalu. We are hoping for more supporters today for our other protest at 3pm. Please we need your help and supports. MalaeOleTalu is Historical and Sacred to the Village of Fagatogo and also people of Am.Samoa.

    Reply
  9. Truth

    Play courts? Parking? For what?! There is a playground across the street next to Tedi’s alongside a basketball court! There is no need for parking, when it is supposedly meant for Fagatogo. This government needs to stop making up lies and wasting money. #SaveMalaeOleTalu

    Reply
    1. Malae o le Laniusaelua

      Tofa a le To’oto’o Lolo .. Ua uma ona faaleaga malae o le Laniusaelua i Paepaeulupoo ua ui atu ai le sewage line ma faasima le Malaeoletalu. Alu e fa’aleaga le Malaetele i Manua
      Matua papau tele le fauutaga loloto.

      Reply
  10. Kalofae ile au makavalea

    You all are such a JOKE! Complaining about the renewing of the Malae. Eh, the malae has been there and you all didn’t give a damn about it. It was pee’d on, used as drinking spots, dog shelter, it was trashed. No one cared and valued it before it wasn’t favored or treated like a “historical landmark” as they claim it is. After you all talk trash about it, then watch the village kids go and use it. Look around Fagatogo, wake the hell up! The whole village has been beautified and blessed with new buildings. Why protest about this, go and protest about all the rent kids causing trouble in the village, go protest about all the drugs in the village. Your signs don’t even make sense. Go back to school. Idiots. I’m a fagatogo as well, and that land is NOT owned by Fa’agata. It still holds the name and will go down in history. This is Fagatogo, this land is Gods. I’ll see you playing cricket on that malae next month.

    A resident of Fagatogo. Who is grateful for positive change.

    Reply
    1. AT

      If you have issues with the troublemakers and druggies in the village then protest about that, PE… A… FAI…E…KE…KOA. A leai, aua la’ia le lau fua le makavalea o isi. Calling people ‘makavalea’ simply gives us a glimpse of the size of your brain. Fa’agata and many supporters, courageous as they are, are pushing for what is meaningful to them. It is unfortunate that you have the lack of foresight and knowledge to see what many corrupted governments have done in the past to their land in the name of “beautification.”

      Reply
    2. Anja Lee

      WE DON’T WANT A CONCRETE JUNGLE, NOR DO WE NEED A FIRE STATION THAT WILL CUT MORE INTO OUR MALAE TO ACCESS THE MAIN THOROUGHFARE…WHAT WILL BE LEFT OF OUR MALAE? WHY THE SENSITIVITY NOW, THIS IS NOT ABOUT THE FAAGATA’S TH EY ARE NOT STAKIN A CLAIM ON THE MALAE, IT’S ABOUT A YOUNG WOMAN, Ā DAUGHTER OF FAGATOGO WHO HAS COURAGEOUSLY BROUGHT THIS TO THE FOREFRONT WHEN NOBODY ELSE WOULD. HER STAND ON THE ISSUE IS NOT ONLY DISCERNING BUT GENUINE BECAUSE IT COMES FROM A GOOD PLACE! YOU GO MACY GIRL!,

      Reply
    3. McClusky Faagata

      Oe lea Kalofae can you please tell us who you are? Aua ke lafi mai i kua ma fai mai ou faamakalaga faapega pei se palaai faailoa sa’o mai oe poo oe se Fagatogo pe leai ae sei ou faamatala aku ia oe le kalaaga o Fagatogo… Fai mai pe iai sou ake

      Reply
  11. Tama le Ise

    Sau mo le Sili fa’aleaga fua le malae o Fagatogo. Lolo aua e te fiapoko. Alu i Sili Manu’a ma fa’asima lou nu’u e leai gi tagata ola. Go and cement your ghost village Sili and leave our malae alone.

    Reply
  12. Fagatogo renamed Loloville

    Dont forget the saying of the elders long gone….If a village has no malae…you are not a village.
    It is the malae that defines the might or spirit of the village and its chiefs.
    So where is your PRIDE., all you who claim the magnificant titles that define Fagatogo.
    Too bad the governor doesnt put all his zeal in his own village in Sili Manua. Now there is a place that needs cement to keep the ocean from eating it up.

    Reply
    1. Surfs Up!

      Whata you mean, it’s already eaten up but he still usin it as an excuse to come back onto the Senate, Lol…talofa, just retire gracefully that’s what honorable People do!

      Reply
  13. PusiTigā

    Leave the Malae alone and get off the Malae. The Governor his crooked admin and the Government has no right to build anything on this Malae. Fia popoko.

    Reply
  14. “KU KIA’I MALEOLETALU”

    They already have designated areas for the kids to play. No need for parking lots as well. Wish for the Manas to visit you someday. Then you will know what it means. Stop all the BS and excuses and leave the Malae alone????????????Shame on you Governor????????

    Reply
  15. Matilda uikirifi

    U are doing the right thing Macy such a strong heart ❤️ for your villiage Nd especially America samoa ❤️❤️❤️

    Reply
  16. Fialelei Fiailoa

    Talofae, o le a le mea o le a fa’asima ai fua le Malaeoletalu e fai ai fua ni paka e paka ai ta’avale, o lo’o iai pakaga a le Tedi e paka ai ta’avale, ia ma le isi o le a le mea o le a toe fai ai fo’i malae ta’alo, ae fa’afefea le malae ta’alo o lo’o fa’afesaga’i ma le fale fa’amasino. Se soia ia se ua uma lo oe manogi, o lou tausaga mulimuli lea, o ai lena ua gal atu ia oe ua fia maua fo’i sana ia tupe e palafu atoa ai fua le Malaeoletalu, o lae lava aulelei ma manaia le malae. Va’ai se’i uma lau nofoaiga ona e alu lea e fa’asima lou malae i lou nu’u o Sili na’o le 2 fale o lo’o iai. Tu’u le Malaeoletalu leaga ole malae o le town nu’u o Fagatogo. Ave lena Tupe ua maua e fai ai se isi mea a le malo, o lo’o mana’omia se fesoasoani pei o auala i le nu’u o Vailoa ma Sogi ua leaga faia auala ua tau le mafai ona feoa’i ia ta’avale. Leave the Malaeoletalu alone.

    Reply
  17. Macy Faagata WooChing

    Excuse me, A Joke. Why don’t you show your face then, instead of hiding aea. Ea ua e poko kele ma kalafo mai ou kala faavalevalea faapega. Ga la e oso mai ma ou kala le fekaui ga ma faaali lou oe makavalea ma lou vaivai, tried to put down Fagatogo people who is protesting to save Our Malae. Who do u think you are, calling us names. If you ain’t a true fagatogo maybe u should go take your comments somewhere else. You’re agreeing with the changes of Fagatogo sacred Malae, kau mai e lē o oe se Fagatogo. Kalofae ia oe. Ga ou fai aku we Faagata own the Malae, obviously u have something against my family, but this ain’t about my family, is about saving the MalaeOleTalu for the young generation of Fagatogo n the people of American Samoa. May God have mercy on your soul. Waste my time arguing with people like you who have no kind of support.

    Reply
  18. T. Fatuesi

    My comment is directed towards “ Kalofa e, ile au Makavalea”. Afai o oe ose Fagatogo mao’i why hide behind a different name and not comment as yourself. Kele ou kala ae e leai sou ake. You have all this BS to talk about but the real Fagatogo youth that are out there making noise and making a voice for dumby people like yourself. Let me tell you something the Malae Ole Talu is considered a Historic Landmark, which means permits must be approved, obtained and notify the Matais of the village before any work is done to any Historic Landmark. That’s why my cousin is out there making a voice for you cowards who don’t have the heart to speak up for what is right. So before you go calling out our Faagata family. Take a good look at your family and see what your family have done with the situation thus far. Lea ua iloa aku ai o oe lea ua ova maka valea koe leai sou ake… To my Faagata family especially my cousin Macy good on you and keep fighting for what is right… Signed T. Fatuesi

    Reply
  19. Leaisoufeau

    Onosa’i ia…ua kele a kala a Kalofae oga o le LE malamalama. Fa’aaaoga mai fo’i le kakou M…MALOLO pe a le MALAMALAMA. I doubt you even know what it means to value history. The field was registered a Historical Landmark and the integrity of our malae is at stake. I’m not from Fagatogo, but I know of it’s historical value throughout generations. Are you really willing to others to destroy that? Apparently so. Positive change can be applied to other lands of the village. Why not volunteer yours?

    Reply

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