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Lalotalie River Retreat
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Lalotalie River Retreat

Banned forever

By Lanuola Tusani Tupufia

A 29-year-old man has been banished from his village for life, after his parents were ordered to provide 300 sows for their son’s 'sin.' Sebastian Satoa was the author of a letter to the editor published on page 12 of the Sunday Samoan, last week, in which he blasted the Solosolo Village Council over the burning of Leota Ituau Ale’s properties.

Titled “Shame on you Solosolo,” Mr Satoa’s letter reads;  “Almost every child shed a tear even men and women. Why?
Because they felt in their hearts the love for another human being.  “Where is the ‘Faleula o Samoa’ Leau Vaasa? Shame on you! Where is your ‘tofa fa’atupu’ Nuafesile Miliona?

Shame on you. Where is the ‘Bible’ that you use to breach Vailuu Lave? “Shame on you because you can’t stand alone in your quest. It is time to put a stop to this mess before it’s too late.” On Tuesday, Mr Satoa’s parents were fined by Solosolo. They gave $2000 and two sows.

Solosolo’s pulenu’u (mayor), Segaula Lo’i said they have forgiven Mr Satoa’s parents but their son has gone too far. “We have banished him because he has shamed the village for writing ab

out the village to the newspaper,” Segaula said. “Some village matters should never be talked about publicly…it has caused villagers pain and heartache.”

The mayor said they have forgiven the parents with the $2000 that they handed over to the village but “their son is banished from the village and must never be seen here.”
The mayor warned the relatives of the banished man saying that anyone who takes him in to their home in Solosolo will be punished as well.

Segaula told the Sunday Samoan that their concern is not the writer’s right to express his opinion publicly but the village message is clear to “teach younger people not to challenge village protocol.

“He is being punished so that they will know how to respect decisions made in the village and to protect village protocols, it’s dignity comes from decision from ali’i ma faipule.”
The mayor also said that maybe if the man had turned himself in and apologized, it would’ve been a different outcome.

The young man, however, published a public apology in the Samoa Observer Tuesday 21 February.
Segaula also rejected claims that the penalty and fine was too extreme saying that whatever decision comes from the highest authority in the village, is appropriate.

Mr Satoa said he accepts the decision made by the village to ban him from the village.
He now lives at Si’usega and is regularly visited by his wife and two children who continue to live at Solosolo.

Mr Satoa, however, said that if the village does not allow the practice of freedom of speech, “then there is no use of the government having laws that implement the importance of people’s rights.”

 

 

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