Samoa has a parliamentary democratic system of government. The head of state has a role similar to that of a monarch. The prime minister is the head of government. The head of state is elected by the parliament for a term of five years. The prime minister is appointed by the head of state. The executive powers are with the cabinet, members of which are chosen by the prime minister.
The parliament, known as Fono, is comprised of 49 members, directly elected for a term of five years. Of the 49 seats, 47 are reserved for ethnic Samoans and the remaining two seats are for members of other communities.
Major political parties include Human Rights Protection Party (HRPP), Samoa Party (SP), Tautua Samoa Party (TSP), and The People's Party (TPP).
Mr. Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Neioti Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi is the current President of Samoa, belonging to Human Rights Protection Party (HRPP).
(Source: Samoa Gov, State.gov, IPU)
The country’s economic freedom score is 60.6, making its economy the 84th freest in the 2011 Index of Economic Freedom. Samoa was placed 13th out of 43 regional countries in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Corruption Perceptions (CPI) index 2010 is a survey to measure the perceived level of corruption across countries worldwide. Samoa is ranked 62nd on this list, indicating the corruption level across the public departments is fairly low. The CPI score of Samoa for 2010 is 4.1.
Freedom of information
World Press Freedom Index 2010 ranks Samoa at 111th rank. Country’s score is 33 points indicating that its media is moderately regulated by the Government.
Journalists are restricted to report freely on certain political issues.
· Le Samoa
· Samoa Observer
· Samoa Times
· Talamua Magazine
The legal system is based on the English legal system. The judicial system includes Supreme Court, two District Courts and Appeal Court. The Supreme Court is the highest court of justice. There are six local judges who oversee the operations of Supreme Court and District Courts.
The judicial system also includes Land and Titles Court which deals with the issues of customary land ownership and ‘matai’ (chief) titles.