The village of Apia is serious about catching the youth gangs who are causing trouble in the Apia Township.
In an attempt to capture the young culprits, the Mayor of Apia, Tuiletufuga Siaosi Tuiletufuga, said the men of the village are monitoring the streets.
Disappointed with the ugly image that the youth gangs have painted about the town of Apia, Tuiletufuga said these thugs are not from the Apia village.
“We don’t know where they come from but I can assure you they are not kids from our village,” Tuiletufuga said.
“They are causing trouble in Apia giving our village a bad name and we do not accept that.
“Our village has met over the issue and the matai and men of our village are keeping an eye on these trouble makers…
“The difficult thing is catching them because I know they plan their attacks at odd hours – when our men are not seen.”
Tuiletufuga said the stories of the victims that were attacked in Matafele are disturbing and sad.
“It’s very sad to hear about Ms. Retzlaff and those that were attacked,” said the high chief.
“We are not resting, we are also playing our part in helping the authority. We just want to catch them – whoever these youths are and when we do we will happily hand them over to police for the law to deal with them.”
Tuiletufuga pointed out that the village matai and untitled men are walking the streets of Apia to regularly monitor it to ensure the safety of the public traveling to the area and that tourists are protected.
He added he had also met the Minister of Police about incidents happening in town.
Tuiletufuga believes that a youth fellowship programme taking place in front of the government building is a factor to the crimes happening in Apia.
While he agrees that the programme was initiated for a fellowship to strengthen the relationship between youths, he said there are groups of youths who are taking advantage of the opportunity to do bad things.
Two weeks ago several people were attacked in Apia by a gang of youths targeting individuals and vulnerable people hanging around the area.
The victims of the attacks had their belongings taken from them together with food and phones.
Some of them are a group of friends who were sharing a pizza behind the government building when the culprits struck and took their food.
They were lucky to have gotten away.
Another male who went to Pinati restaurant to buy some food on that same day was punched from behind and had his food taken from him.
Lastly, a young man was beaten by three other men and later died at the hospital.