For immediate release: July 20, 2022


SAMOA, July 20 – APTC appoints new Country Manager for Samoa and Tonga

The Australia Pacific Training Coalition (APTC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Afioga Lagaaia Lealiifano Easter Manila-Silipa as Country Director for Samoa and Tonga.

Ms Manila-Silipa took up her post earlier this month, joining the Samoa Qualifications Authority (SQA) APTC where she served as Chief Executive. She has a vast knowledge of Samoan post-school education and training, having spent 16 years with SQA.

Having worked extensively in the education sector, Ms Manila-Silipa says she is looking forward to improving education and training opportunities for people in Samoa and Tonga through her new role.

“Given the current focus on skills development and strengthening the technical and vocational education and training (TVET) sector, I am delighted to continue APTC’s work in providing skills and training, improve collaboration with industries, local TVET providers and employers and support the development of quality TVET qualifications that meet national standards,” she said .
She hopes to continue to work collaboratively with all TVET stakeholders in Samoa and Tonga to produce quality graduates that meet workplace expectations and needs.
Ms. Manila-Silipa has been instrumental in strengthening the partnership between SQA and APTC. While at the SQA, she helped facilitate the signing of a formal partnership between the two institutions in 2021. This partnership was recently renewed in June.

APTC Executive Director Janelle Chapman said she was delighted to welcome the new Country Director and looks forward to her leadership of APTC’s operations and strategic direction to achieve lasting results in TVET for Samoa and Tonga.
“Ms. Manila-Silipa has managed to build strong relationships with education and training providers, nationally and internationally. His extensive experience working in various senior management roles, particularly with development partners in Samoa’s education sector, will add value to APTC’s existing contributions in developing a workforce. skilled, inclusive and productive work for the prosperity of the region,” she added.
Ms. Chapman also acknowledged the efforts of former National Director, Ms. Cheri Robinson Moors, expressing APTC’s gratitude for her leadership and contribution to skills in the region.

The APTC is Australia’s flagship investment in TVET in the region. Samoa is one of six APTC country offices in the region.

APTC has trained over 17,000 graduates, including over 2,000 Samoans for a wide range of professional careers.


For more information, please contact APTC’s Strategic Communications team via email: [email protected] or phone: +679 7021819 or visit our website:

About APTC:
APTC is a Center of Training Excellence providing Australian Standard qualifications in a variety of professional fields. APTC programs are delivered by highly trained, highly skilled trainers and are relevant and aligned with current and future career opportunities for graduates – careers where skilled employees are in high demand. As Australia’s flagship investment in technical and vocational education and training in the region, APTC serves ten Pacific island countries: Fiji, Samoa, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Timor -Leste, Nauru, Tuvalu, Tonga and Kiribati.

APTC is an Australian Government initiative in partnership with the Pacific and Timor-Leste.


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