Village comes together to clean up

By Ilia L. Likou ,

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Solosolo chief, Logoipule Tumau.

Solosolo chief, Logoipule Tumau. (Photo: Misiona Simo)

The fury of Cyclone Gita left tons of logs and debris along the coast of Solosolo village.

Yesterday, the village came together to clear the rubbish from the sea and on the road as they began to rebuild their lives.

Chief Logoipule Tumau Taiali’i was among them.

“It looked really awful after the cyclone,” he said.

“But today we come together to clean up the mess as you can see. The debris and all sorts of rubbish were carried here by the strong waves.

“We have to do something, not just sit around and wait on someone to come and clean up the rubbish, especially in this area where most tourists visit for surfing.”

Logoipule said he was grateful the cyclone only lasted less than six hours.

 “Waves and the lashing at the coastal area of Solosolo during the cyclone was so strong,” he said.

“When we woke up in the morning, there was just a pile of rubbish everywhere.

"I mean there were piles of concrete blocks thrown across the road because the sea just picked them up and threw them.”

Logoipule added that he was concerned about the attitude of some people when the cyclone arrived.

“Some people were standing too close to danger while huge waves were lashing the shore.

“But this is us in Samoa; we always want to see for ourselves and we forget the consequences.”

Logoipule said their village worked on clearing up the road as soon as the cyclone stopped.

“It’s all about working together. I believe that the damage to our village is nothing compared to villages in Savai’i that I heard were struck by Cyclone Gita,” he said.

Solosolo village work together in clearing rubbish from the sea.
Solosolo village work together in clearing rubbish from the sea.

"When the road re-opens there will be some single-lane sections, so for today we are trying really hard to clear up all the rubbish from the sea and on the road as well.

"Most importantly we have to look out for the tourists."

Heading to Lalomanu and Aleipata, contractors have worked really hard to clear up the road and a few landslides.

Taxi Driver Taito Loloma of Sataoa said their side woke with some damages to plantations and to their houses but it was a “beautiful, sunny day’ yesterday.

“We all know what to do when it comes to a cyclone, we have to be careful especially since people react differently in such situations.

“Some people get really edgy and pull out in front of you because they are panicky and worried about their properties."

He said the road between his village to Apia is "quite bluffy".

"It was just hell and the wind howled all night,” Taito said.

“I didn't even go to sleep.

“It was a scary night, trees were shaking in the wind and the road was a mess

Taito said that, “The waves that broke the road were so big they had to dodge them while driving.

"I think the same situation occured in Apia.

"There were also big driftwood and other stuff, and we had to watch for the waves coming over the road occasionally.

"But so far,  people here (Safata) are really resilient and we have a really good network and we all chip in and help each other and look after ourselves pretty well."

© Samoa Observer 2016

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