(AFP) – Nov 6, 2008
PAGO PAGO (AFP) — Voters in US-administered American Samoa face another trip to the polls in two weeks after elections to select a governor failed to produce a clear winner.
Under the territory's electoral law, a candidate must win over 50 percent of the vote to be successful.
Tuesday's elections showed American Samoa's 17,000 voters split their votes between three of four pairs of candidates for the posts of governor and lieutenant governor.
Sitting Governor Togiola Tulafono and Lieutenant Governor Faoa Ipulasi Sunia topped the election with 41.3 percent of the vote, electoral officials said.
Challengers Utu Abe Malae and Nua Mailo Saoluaga received 31.4 percent, ahead of Afoa Leulumoega Lutu and Velega Savali with 26.8 percent, while a fourth pairing only registered 0.5 percent.
Togiola and Faoa topped the poll, even though Faoa is awaiting federal trial on charges of corruption, bribery and conspiracy to commit fraud.
He and another high-ranking official, Senator Tulifua Lam Yuen, have been accused of using their official positions to influence cabinet members to illegally award their companies contracts for government work.
The election also saw Congressman Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin re-elected for an 11th two-year term as American Samoa's non-voting delegate to the US Congress.
The non-voting delegate is unable to vote in the full US House of Representatives, but can vote in any committees they belong to.
In the local House of Representatives elections, which saw contests for 19 of the 21 seats, only eight incumbents were returned.
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