Traditional structure the answer to problems of today

By Aruna Lolani ,

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VILLAGE LIFE IS BEST: Tapunuu Tailalo Faanoi from Vailoa Aleipata.

VILLAGE LIFE IS BEST: Tapunuu Tailalo Faanoi from Vailoa Aleipata.

Everyone has an opinion about the social and economical challenges of today.

Tapunuu Tailalo Faanoi, of Vailoa Aleipata, is the same.

Speaking to the Village Voice, he believes the traditional social and family structure of Samoa provides the best solution.

Take the village governance for example. 

 “If the Village Council has good control over its people; then families will be stable as well,” said Tapunuu.

The 60-year-old said rules within the village were set by their ancestors to guide people.

“Things have now changed for the better in our village,” said Tapunuu.

“We emphasize our curfews and evening prayers (faiga lotu) because these are the kind of practices that we believe can keep families together.

He added: “The same goes for the consumption of alcohol. Back then if you drink in the village you will be fined with two cartons of tin fish but we still saw people disobeying so we’ve raised the stake.

“Now if you drink, you will be fined with an amount of $1000 and you know what, it actually works because people started getting tired of paying this huge amount of money.

“Even when it comes to handling family matters, when a family has a disagreement that causes them to be in a dispute, they will be punished by the village council. Their problem will be brought to the council to be solved.

Furthermore, he said “Whatever conflict the family has while they are staying in the village, that’s the village business as well, and for me, I believe that helps a family in a way to help get their problems sorted out in a professional matter.

“It is also within villages that practices of keeping our culture and traditions alive strongly exists because we know that without it, how do we expect to know who we truly are?”

“That’s why life in the village is the best and whenever I go to Apia, the moment I get there, I want to come back home straight away.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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