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Samoa Pacific Games Opening Ceremony Scrambles Up Plan B

Samoa's Ministry of Education is scrambling up Plan B to cover for the unexpected pull out of 300 students from the Maluafou and Papauta Colleges of the EFFKS Church.

Whatever Plan B entails the Minister of Education and Chairman of the Games Organising Committee, Loau Keneti Sio is not worried.

He is confident the opening ceremony will go well despite the last minute surprise shock by the church college students.

Organisers of the opening performance confirmed that 300 students have been yanked out who were supposed to be involved in the opening act that protrayed worshiping.

As of Tuesday the officials involved as organisers were still hopeful the EFKS Church will come around and allow the kids to perform their part they have practiced and reheaed for several months.

The Minister Loau claimed there has always been a Plan B from the start of the preparations for the opening ceremony and all is now in the hands of the Ministry Of Education.

“The Ministry is prepared for the unexpected and we have always known something would happen,” Loau told Newsline. “ There should always be a Plan B in place for anything.”

“There is nothing to worry about. People are free to do what they want.”

Loau refutes the explanation from the EFKS Church that they were not informed about the actual day of the opening ceremony.

He said there were  letters sent out informing the schools about the programme and it included the day of the opening.

Loau said all the schools from other denominations replied except the EFKS.

The EFKS Church General Secretary Reverend Vavatau Taufao denied the Church receiving a programme of the official opening.

“I would like to know who this was given to,” Rev Taufao reacted to Newsline enquiry.“ We knew about our students performing on Sunday from media reports.

“The Church Education Committee was never officially informed. The General Assembly knew nothing about this nor did the leadership of the Church.”

Rev Taufao confirms that the decision for the students not to participate at the opening ceremony of the Games still stands.

He clarified that the only event that their students are not allowed to participate in is the opening ceremony because it is held on Sunday. Sunday is holy so the students are not allowed to dance Rev Taufao said.

He added that if it was a Saturday they would let their students perform.

Rev Taufao said that EFKS schools are supportive of the Games and they have done what they had been asked of by government to do but they would not allow their students to take part in the opening because it is held on Sunday.

“We knew about this a week ago and on Thursday we held a meeting.”

The school children throughout Samoa have been preparing for the Pacific Games for more than three months.


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