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The Global Gender Equality Constitutional Database is a repository of gender equality related provisions in 194 constitutions from around the world. Experience its wealth and depth of information by starting your search now.

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Customary Law

Samoa, English

A Matai title shall be held in accordance with Samoan custom and usage and with the law relating to Samoan custom and usage. (Art. 100)

Customary Law

Samoa, English

WHEREAS sovereignty over the Universe belongs to the Omni-present God alone, and the authority to be exercised by the people of Samoa within the limits prescribed by His commandments is a sacred heritage;
WHEREAS the Leaders of Samoa have declared that Samoa should be an Independent State based on Christian principles and Samoan custom and tradition; … (Preamble)

Customary Law

Samoa, English

There shall be a Land and Titles Court with such composition and with such jurisdiction in relation to Matai titles and customary land as may be provided by Act. (Art. 103)

Customary Law

Samoa, English

(1) In this Constitution, unless it is otherwise provided or the context otherwise requires: …
“Law” being in force in Samoa; and includes this Constitution, any Act of Parliament and any proclamation, regulation, order, by-law or other act of authority made thereunder, the English common law and equity for the time being in so far as they are not excluded by any other law in force in Samoa, and any custom or usage which has acquired the force of law in Samoa or any part thereof under the provisions of any Act or under a judgment of a Court of competent jurisdiction.
… (Art. 111)

Religious Law

Samoa, English

WHEREAS sovereignty over the Universe belongs to the Omni-present God alone, and the authority to be exercised by the people of Samoa within the limits prescribed by His commandments is a sacred heritage;
WHEREAS the Leaders of Samoa have declared that Samoa should be an Independent State based on Christian principles and Samoan custom and tradition; … (Preamble)

Customary Law

Samoa, English

(1) All land in Samoa is customary land, freehold land or public land.
(2) Customary land means land held from Samoa in accordance with Samoan custom and usage and with the law relating to Samoan custom and usage.
… (Art. 101)

Equality and Non-Discrimination

Samoa, English

(1) All persons are equal before the law and entitled to equal protection under the law.
(2) Except as expressly authorised under the provisions of this Constitution, no law and no executive or administrative action of the State shall, either expressly or in its practical application, subject any person or persons to any disability or restriction or confer on any person or persons any privilege or advantage on grounds only of descent, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, social origin, place of birth, family status, or any of them.
(3) Nothing in this Article shall –
(a) Prevent the prescription of qualifications for the service of Samoa or the service of a body corporate directly established under the law; or
(b) Prevent the making of any provision for the protection or advancement of women or children or of any socially or educationally retarded class of persons.
(4) Nothing in this Article shall affect the operation of any existing law or the maintenance by the State of any executive or administrative practice being observed on Independence Day:
PROVIDED THAT the State shall direct its policy towards the progressive removal of any disability or restriction which has been imposed on any of the grounds referred to in clause (2) and of any privilege or advantage which has been conferred on any of those grounds. (Art. 15)

Affirmative Action (Broadly)

Samoa, English

(1) All persons are equal before the law and entitled to equal protection under the law.
(2) Except as expressly authorised under the provisions of this Constitution, no law and no executive or administrative action of the State shall, either expressly or in its practical application, subject any person or persons to any disability or restriction or confer on any person or persons any privilege or advantage on grounds only of descent, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, social origin, place of birth, family status, or any of them.
(3) Nothing in this Article shall –

(b) Prevent the making of any provision for the protection or advancement of women or children or of any socially or educationally retarded class of persons.
… (Art. 15)

Jurisdiction and Access

Samoa, English

(1) An appeal shall lie to the Court of Appeal from any decision of the Supreme Court in any proceeding, if the Supreme Court certifies that the case involves a substantial question of law as to the interpretation or effect of any provision of this Constitution.
(2) Where the Supreme Court has refused to give such a certificate, the Court of Appeal may, if it is satisfied that the case involves a substantial question of law as to the interpretation or effect of any provision of this Constitution, grant special leave to appeal from that decision.
(3) Where such a certificate is given or such leave granted, any party in the case may appeal to the Court of Appeal on the ground that any such question as aforesaid has been wrongly decided and, with the leave of that Court, on any other ground. (Art. 80)

Jurisdiction and Access

Samoa, English

(1) The Supreme Court shall have such original, appellate and revisional jurisdiction as may be provided by Act.
(2) Without prejudice to any appellate or revisional jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, where in any proceedings before another Court (except the Court of Appeal) a question arises as to the interpretation or effect of any provision of this Constitution, the Supreme Court may, on the application of any party to the proceedings, determine that question and either dispose of the case or remit it to that other Court to be disposed of in accordance with the determination.
(3) The Head of State, acting on the advice of the Prime Minister, may refer to the Supreme Court for its opinion any question as to the interpretation or effect of any provision of this Constitution which has arisen or appears likely to arise, and the Court shall pronounce its opinion on any question so referred to it. (Art. 73)