A community elder believes chiefs and village councils should play a more active role in pulling youths back in line in accordance with traditional values and beliefs.
Viiga Faatoia, 57, of Lalomanu believes the chiefs have eased their foot off the pedal in terms of disciplining young people and the results are obvious.
“The way we do things in our village is that we have matais and the village council which help protect everything,” he said.
“Even with our youths, they know how things are run here so they cause no trouble.”
“No one is able to do anything that is out of order because everyone obeys instructions.”
This does not happen in other villages, especially the ones in town.
“And that’s why there are social problems,” he said.
“That’s what I know because when we refer to the town areas in Apia, many of the people causing trouble are not from Apia. I feel sorry for the name Apia because most of these people are not actually from Apia.”
“This is why you want village councils to get a hold of these people and do something to stop giving villages like Apia a bad name.”
Viiga said that higher penalties must be given to young people who misbehave.
“That’s the only solution that I know,” he said. “I think the villages should be doing a lot more.”
“Another solution is that everyone should go to church, because I can tell that a lot of youths don’t go to church on Sundays anymore.”
“Instead they waste their time getting themselves drunk without any thoughts about the day that was especially created for worshipping and thanking the Lord for the whole week.”
“Others take long naps on Sunday instead of going to church.”
“When we begin our lives wrongly, the result will not be good. That’s what’s happening.”