Monday, 31 August 2009 11:04 AM

Samoan Court Rules Road Switch Will Go Ahead

Samoa's Supreme Court has ruled that the switch from right to left-hand driving will go ahead, rejecting the lobby by a group wanting to stop the switch.

According to the Samoa Observer, the Supreme Court ruling means the switch would go ahead as planned on 7 September after ruling against the bid by anti-switch group People Against Switching Sides (PASS) on Friday.

However, according to the report, PASS member, Va'asiliifiti Moelagi Jackson, said that the ruling doesn't change anything and the failure of the attempt to stop the switch through the courts does not remove their belief of the dangers it presents to the public.

She also added that the ruling also does not remove the group's belief that Government has done nowhere enough to prepare the country for the switch.

Samoa was a former German colony and therefore, like most of Europe, has right-hand driving.
The reason for the switch, according to the country's Prime Minister Tuilaepa Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi, is to allow Samoans to use the cheaper Right-Hand Drive vehicles which are sourced from Australia, New Zealand or Japan and also allowing relatives in these countries to send used cars back home, making cars cheaper.
He stated that this would allow even those in rural areas to own vehicles which would help them develop their land.

However, the change also means that many will have to buy new vehicles and public transports like buses will have to make changes to their vehicles like switching doors to the other side.