No electricity, simple shelter

By Nefertiti Matatia ,

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LIVING A SIMPLE LIFE: Lilo Aliilua, 63 years old in his home at Leusoali’i.

LIVING A SIMPLE LIFE: Lilo Aliilua, 63 years old in his home at Leusoali’i.

A home is where we find refuge and safety.

Unfortunately this is not the case for Lilo Aliilua.

When there is torrential rain or cyclones, the 63-year-old, from the village of Leusoali’i, moves to one of his relative’s house inland.

He is not married and has no children.  Mr. Aliilua is unemployed and he lives off what he plants. 

For his age, he says it is a hassle moving from one place to another.

“I fear having electricity inside my house because it (house) is not strong and this is the best I could afford,” he said.

“It’s just a roof that is made out of coconut leaves and having tyres to hold it, but nothing stops the rain from leaking into the house and ruining my belongings.”

“If I have electricity in the house and water leaks through, it could cause a fire. So despite how I want to watch our rugby games in my own home, the radio is as far as I could go.”

Mr. Aliilua says there is no reason for him to have a cell phone for emergencies when there is no electricity to charge it. 

He shared about the risks that he has to take because for a person like him, you never know what could happen, especially when you live alone.

Most people always demand for electricity to make life easier, but for him, electricity would create more unnecessary problems.

Mr. Aliilua dreams of turning back time to his young days.

“Being in your youth, you could do a lot of things and despite being poor, there is still a possibility to climb up the coconut tree to get more leaves for your shelter.”

Having nobody to help him with everything in his house is another daily struggle which he encounters when he cooks, cleans the house and works in the plantation.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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