Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa’ilele Malielegaoi has laughed at a threat by the Luatuanu’u Village Council to sue him for defamation over his use of the word “dogs” in reference to the village.
Responding to questions yesterday, the Prime Minister said members of the Village Council should have been arrested instead. He accused them of being responsible for the roadblock, which put members of the public at risk.
“I heard about them and if I knew I would have told the Police to arrest them,” he said.
“They were the ones who masterminded the whole conflict and pushed the young men to block the road.
“They instructed the men to cut down the coconut trees to block the road while they go and check the passengers of the busses if anyone from Falefa was on the bus.
“What? The truth hurts because they never anticipated this would happen.
“If this was my village, the punishment would be death because this has tarnished the reputation of the village.”
According to the Prime Minister, if the Police did not react in a professional manner, lives would have been lost.
“What should we do about this? They blocked the road and stopped cars looking for Falefa people. This is irresponsible and illegal and they should be held accountable for their actions.
“If this resulted in the death of a Police Officer, it would’ve been worse, the Police would not hold back.
“And if they were real Chiefs, they would understand the meaning of what I said.”
Tuilaepa said the Police are continuing their investigation.
Once this matter reaches Court, “I will call on all members of the public who were affected by the roadblock to testify in Court.”
This week, members of the Village Council told the Samoa Observer that attempts to file an official complaint against the Prime Minister with the Samoa Police Service had been rejected.
The developments were confirmed by the Spokesperson for the Luatuanu’u Village Council, Tofete Lafaua Tofete.
“Not only did he call us dogs, he stripped our village of the opportunities in the seasonal work scheme overseas and has also banned our rugby team from taking part in the competition,” he said.
“We believe the decision is unfair. It is over the top and we don’t accept it.”
Besides, Tofete said the village is reeling from Tuilaepa’s decision to use “dogs” in reference to their village.
“These are not the words of a leader,” he said. “Luatuanu’u will never be the same after the public comments uttered by the Prime Minister.
“We have been ridiculed by every Samoan all over the world after what the Prime Minister has said about our village.”