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Sess. II. Chs. 281, 286. 1929
Chap. 281.-Joint Resolution To provide for accepting, ratifying, and confirming the cessions of certain islands of the Samoan group to the United States, and for other purposes
Whereas certain chiefs of the islands of Tutuila and Manua and certain other islands of the Samoan group lying between the thirteenth and fifteenth degrees of latitude south of the Equator and between the one hundred and sixtyseventh and one hundred and seventy-first degrees of longitude west of Greenwich, herein referred to as the islands of eastern Samoa, having in due form agreed to cede absolutely and without reserve to the United States of America all rights of sovereignty of whatsoever kind in and over these islands of the Samoan group by their acts dated April 10, 1900, and July 16, 1904: Therefore be it
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That (a) said cessions are accepted, ratified, and confirmed, as of April 10, 1900, and July 16, 1904, respectively.
(b) The existing laws of the United States relative to public lands shall not apply to such lands in the said islands of eastern Samoa; but the Congress of the United States shall enact special laws for their management and disposition: Provided, That all revenue from or proceeds of the same, except as regards such .part thereof as may be used or occupied for the civil, military, or naval purposes of the United States or may be assigned for the use of the local government, shall be used solely for the benefit of the inhabitants of the said islands of eastern Samoa for educational and other public purposes.
(c) Until Congress shall provide for the government of such islands, all civil, judicial, and military powers shall be vested in such person or persons and shall be exercised in such manner as the President of the United States shall direct; and the President shall have power to remove said officers and fill the vacancies so occasioned.
(d) The President shall appoint six commissioners, two of whom shall be members of the Senate, two of whom shall be members of the House of Representatives, and two of whom shall be chiefs of the said islands of eastern Samoa, who shall, as soon as reasonably practicable, recommended to Congress such legislation concerning the islands of eastern Samoa as they shall deem necessary or proper.
(e) The sum of $25,000, or so much thereof as may be necessary, is hereby authorized to be appropriated, out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, to be expended at the discretion of the President of the United States of America, for the purpose of carrying this joint resolution into effect. Approved, February 20, 1929.
[Executive Order 10264]
TRANSFER OF THE ADMINISTRATION OF AMERICAN SAMOA FROM THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY TO THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR
Whereas the Island of Tutuila of the Samoan group and all other islands of the group east of longitude 171 degrees west of Greenwich, known as American Samoa, were placed under the control of the Department of the Navy by Executive Order No. 125-A of February 19, 1900; and
Whereas the joint resolution of February 20, 1929, 45 Stat. 1253, provides that until the Congress shall provide for the government of such islands all civil, judicial, and military powers shall be vested in such person or persons and shall be exercised in such manner as the President of the United States may direct; and
Whereas a committee composed of the Secretaries of State, War, the Navy, and the Interior recommended on June 18, 1947, that administrative responsibility for American Samoa be transferred to a civilian agency of the Government at the earliest practicable date as determined by the President; and
Whereas plans for the orderly transfer of administrative responsibility for American Samoa from the Secretary of the Navy to the Secretary of the interior are embodied in a memorandum of understanding between the Department of
the Navy and the Department of the Interior, approved by me on September 23, 1949, and it is the view of the two departments, as expressed in that memorandum, that such transfer should take effect on or about July 1, 1951; and Whereas the transfer of administration of American Samoa from the Secretary of the Navy to the Secretary of the Interior, effective July 1, 1951, appears to be in the public interest:
Now, Therefore, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the said joint resolution of February 20, 1929, and as President of the United States, it is ordered as follows:
1. The administration of American Samoa is hereby transferred from the Secretary of the Navy to the Secretary of the Interior, such transfer to become effective on July 1, 1951.
2. The Department of the Navy and the Department of the Interior shall proceed with the plans for the transfer of administration of American Samoa as embodied in the above-mentioned memorandum of understanding between the two departments.
3. When the transfer of administration made by this order becomes effective, the Secretary of the Interior shall take such action as may be necessary and appropriate, and in harmony with applicable law, for the administration of civil government in American Samoa.
4. The executive departments and agencies of the Government are authorized and directed to cooperate with the Departments of the Navy and Interior in the effectuation of the provisions of this order.
5. The said Executive order of February 19, 1900, is revoked, effective July 1, 1951.
THE WHITE HOUSE, June 29, 1951
HARRY S TRUMAN.
[F. R. Doc. 51-7717; Filed, June 29, 1951; 5:05 p.m.]
[Order No. 2657]
GOVERNMENT OF AMERICAN SAMOA
SECTION 1. Purpose. The purpose of this order is to delimit the extent and nature of the authority of the Government of American Samoa, as it will be exercised under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Interior pursuant to Executive Order No. 10264 of June 29, 1951, pending enactment of organic legislation by the Congress, and to prescribe the manner in which the relationships of the Government of American Samoa with the Congress, with the Department of the Interior and other Federal agencies, and with foreign governments and international bodies shall be established and maintained.
SEC. 2. Laws and legislative authority. (a) The laws of American Samoa in effect on July 1, 1951, and the procedure for formulating and amending the laws shall remain in effect until changed by competent authority: Provided, however, That the power formerly exercised by the Secretary of the Navy or his designated representative shall be exercised by the Secretary of the Interior or his designated representative.
(b) No measure affecting the powers of the legislature shall become effective without the approval of the Secretary of the Interior.
SEC. 3. Executive authority. (a) The executive authority of the Government of American Samoa shall be vested in the Governor and other officials appointed pursuant to law, and shall be exercised under the supervision and direction of the Secretary of the Interior.
(b) The relations of the Government of American Samoa with the Congress of the United States on all legislative matters, including appropriations, shall be conducted through the Department of the Interior.
(c) With freedom to consult directly with the Secretary when necessary, the Governor of American Samoa shall normally communicate with the Secretary of the Interior through the Director of the Office of Territories. The Governor shall be responsible for all United States property in American Samoa which is required for the operation of the Government of American Samoa and to which the Department of the Interior has custodial title or which it may use under permit. The Governor shall perform such other functions for the Department of the Interior in American Samoa as may be delegated to him by the Secretary.
(d) Initial contact by the Government of American Samoa with Federal agencies outside the Department of the Interior on other than routine matters shall be established through the Office of Territories of the Department of the Interior. Once the relationship has been established, direct contact between the Government of American Samoa and the Federal agencies concerned may be maintained and the Office of Territories kept informed of significant developments in the relationship. Federal agencies should be encouraged to extend their normal Federal services and assistance to American Samoa whenever practicable, and the Government of American Samoa should be reimbursed for services which it performs for such Federal agencies.
(e) Communications of the Government of American Samoa with foreign governments and international bodies shall be cleared through the Department of the Interior for transmittal by the Department of State, unless some other procedure is approved by the Secretary of the Interior.
SEC. 4. Judicial authority. (a) The judicial authority shall be independent of the executive and legislative powers. Budgetary requests for the territorial judiciary, with supporting justification, should be drawn up by the Chief Justice of American Samoa and submitted for the approval of the Department of the Interior by the Governor of American Samoa as a separate item in the annual budget for American Samoa. The Governor should call the attention of the Department to any questions which he may have regarding the budget for the judiciary. Laws or regulations bearing on the organization or operation of the judiciary shall be submitted to the Secretary of the Interior for approval prior to promulgation.
(b) The Solicitor of the Department of the Interior is authorized to exercise all the power of the Secretary of the Interior in considering and deciding appeals taken to the Secretary of the Interior from decisions rendered by the territorial judiciary.
August 29, 1951.
R. D. SEARLES, Acting Secretary of the Interior.
[F. R. Doc. 51-10665; Filed, Sept. 5, 1951; 8:47 a.m.]
REVISED CONSTITUTION OF AMERICAN SAMOA
Whereas the Congress of the United States, in its Act of February 20, 1929, provided that until the Congress shall provide for the Government of the islands of American Samoa, all civil, judicial, and military powers shall be vested in such person or persons and exercised in such manner as the President of the United States shall direct; and
Whereas by Executive Order No. 10264 the President of the United States directed that the Secretary of the Interior should take such action as may be necessary and appropriate and in harmony with applicable law, for the administration of civil government in American Samoa; and
Whereas it is appropriate that, in the process of developing self-government, the people of American Samoa should enjoy certain rights and responsibilities inherent in the representative form of government; and
Whereas it is desirable that these rights and responsibilities be clearly set forth in a Constitution, and the adoption of a Constitution is in harmony with applicable law; and
Whereas the Constitution adopted in 1960 provided for a revision thereof: Now, therefore, this revised Constitution, having been ratified and approved by the Secretary of the Interior and having been approved by a Constitutional Convention of the people of American Samoa and a majority of the voters of American Samoa voting at the 1966 election, is established to further advance government of the people, by the people, and for the people of American Samoa.
ARTICLE I-BILL OF RIGHTS
Section 1. Freedom of religion, speech, press, rights of assembly and petition: There shall be separation of church and government, and no law shall be enacted respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. Section 2. No deprivation of life, liberty or property without due process: No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law,
nor shall private property be taken for public use before just compensation has been given, and any property or part thereof taken for public use which has not been actively used for such public purpose within three years after taking, shall revert to the owner and the return of compensation received shall not be required.
Section 3: Policy protective legislation: It shall be the policy of the Government of American Samoa to protect persons of Samoan ancestry against alienation of their lands and the destruction of the Samoan way of life and language, contrary to their best interests. Such legislation as may be necessary may be enacted to protect the lands, customs, culture, and traditional Samoan family organization of persons of Samoan ancestry, and to encourage business enterprises by such persons. No change in the law respecting the alienation or transfer of land or any interest therein, shall be effective unless the same be approved by two successive legislatures by a two-thirds vote of the entire membership of each house and by the Governor.
Section 4. Dignity of the individual: The dignity of the individual shall be respected and every person is entitled to protection of the law against malicious and unjustifiable public attacks on the name, reputation, or honor of himself or of his family.
Section 5. Protection against unreasonable searches and seizures: The right of the people to secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. Evidence obtained in violation of this section shall not be admitted in any court.
Section 6. Rights of an accused: No person shall be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or liberty; nor shall he be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself; and the failure of the accused to testify shall not be commented upon nor taken against him. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall have the right to a speedy and public trial, to be informed of the nature and the cause of the accusation and to have a copy thereof; to be confronted with the witnesses against him, to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense. Every man is presumed innocent until he is pronounced guilty by law, and no act of severity which is not reasonably necessary to secure the arrest of an accused person shall be permitted. All persons shall be bailable by sufficient sureties except where the judicial authorities shall determine that the presumption is great that an infamous crime, which term shall include murder and rape, has been committed and that the granting of bail would constitute a danger to the community. Bail shall be set by such judicial authorities. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed nor cruel or unusual punishments inflicted.
Section 7. Habeas Corpus: The writ of habeas corpus shall be granted without delay and free of costs. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended except by the Governor and then only when the public safety requires it in case of war, rebellion, insurrection, or invasion.
Section 8. Quartering of militia: No soldier or member of the militia shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner or the lawful occupant, nor in the time of war, exept in a manner prescribed by law. The military authority shall always be subordinate to the civil authority in time of peace.
Section 9. Imprisonment for debt: There shall be no imprisonment for debt except in cases of fraud.
Section 10. Slavery prohibited: Neither slavery, nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist in American Samoa.
Section 11. Treason: Treason against the Government of American Samoa shall consist only in levying war against it, adhering to its enemies, or giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason except on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or a confession in open court.
Section 12. Subversives ineligible to hold public office: No person who advocates, or who aids or belongs to any party, organization, or association which advocates the overthrow by force or violence of the Government of American
Samoa or of the United States shall be qualified to hold any public office of trust or profit under the Government of American Samoa.
Section 13. Retroactive laws and bills of attainder: No bill of attainder, ex post facto law, nor any law impairing the obligation of contracts shall be passed.
Section 14. Health, safety, morals and general welfare: Laws may be enacted for the protection of the health, safety, morals and general welfare, of the people of American Samoa.
Section 15. Education: The Government shall operate a system of free and non-sectarian public education. The government will also encourage qualified persons of good character to acquire further education, locally and abroad, both general and technical, and thereafter to return to American Samoa to the end that the people thereof may be benefited.
Section 16. Unspecified rights and privileges and immunities: The enumeration of certain rights in this Constitution shall not be construed to impair or deny other rights retained by the people. No law shall be made or enforced which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of the citizens of American Samoa.
ARTICLE II-THE LEGISLATURE
Section 1. Legislature: There shall be a Legislature which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives. The Legislature shall have authority to pass legislation with respect to subjects of local application, except that:
(a) No such legislation may be inconsistent with this Constitution or the laws of the United States applicable in American Samoa ;
(b) No such legislation may conflict with treaties or international agreements of the United States;
(c) Money bills enacted by the Legislature of American Samoa shall not provide for the appropriation of funds in excess of such amounts as are available from revenues raised pursuant to the tax laws and other revenue laws of American Samoa, but excluding therefrom such income as is derived from user charges or service related reimbursements to the Government of American Samoa which is segregated for the use of the activity to which such charges or reimbursements are related. Prior to his final submission to the Secretary of the Interior of requests for Federal funds necessary for the support of government functions in American Samoa, the Governor shall prepare a preliminary budget plan. He shall submit such plan to the Legislature in joint session for its review and recommendation with respect to such portions as relate to expenditures of funds proposed to be appropriated by the Congress of the United States. With respect to such portions of the preliminary budget plan, the Governor shall adopt such recommendations of the Legislature as he may deem appropriate, but he shall transmit to the Secretary all recommendations he has not adopted;
(d) Legislation involving the expenditure of funds other than as budgeted shall include revenue measures to provide the needed funds.
Section 2. Membership: The Senate shall consist of eighteen members, three from the Manu'a District, six from the Western District, and nine from the Eastern District.
The House of Representatives shall consist of twenty members elected from the following representative districts, the number of representatives from each of the districts to be as indicated:
Representative District No. 1, composed of Ta'u, Fitiuta and Faleasao, two representatives;
Representative District No. 2, composed of Ofu, Olosega and Sili, one repre
Representative District No. 3, Vaifanua-composed of the villages of Alao, Aoa, Onenoa, Tula and Vatia, one representative;
Representative District No. 4, Saole-composed of the villages of Aunuu, Amouli, Utumea and Alofau, one representative;
Representative District No. 5, Sua No. 1.-composed of the villages of Fagaitua, Amaua, Auto, Avaiō, Alega, Aumi and Laulii, one representative;
Representative District No. 6, Sua No. 2.-composed of the villages of Sailele, Masausi, Masefau and Afono, one representative;
Representative District No. 7, Ma'uputasi No. 1.-composed of the villages of Fatumafuti, Fagaalu and Utulei, one representative;
Representative District No. 8, Ma'uputasi No. 2.-composed of the village of Fagatogo, one representative;