Father clings to hope he will see his children again

By Fetalai Tuilulu’u ,

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KEEPING THINGS CLEAN: Aiga Pinati, 47, of Vaiusu and Salelesi.

KEEPING THINGS CLEAN: Aiga Pinati, 47, of Vaiusu and Salelesi. (Photo: Misiona Simo)

Aiga Pinati of Salelesi is a contented man.

Having moved to Vaiusu for personal reasons, he caught up with the Village Voice yesterday where he shared a few things about his life.

It includes the fact he has been separated from his children but remains hopeful that he will see them again.

The 47-year-old works for a family at Se’ese’e.

 “There are times when I think life is hard,” he said. “But it’s not always the same. It depends on how hard you work.”

Aiga works to clean the family’s land and maintain their plantation. He earns $140 a week. 

“I’ve been doing this all my life; clearing the land, planting crops and gathering them.”

 “I live alone because my wife and I are separated. We have three kids but they are all in New Zealand.”

“I know they are happy where ever they are and I try to be happy for them.” 

Aiga works six days a week and Sunday, he goes to church.  

 “I always start my work early in the morning before the sun gets too hot to do any work.”

“The village is doing a asiasiga (inspection) tomorrow so we get to tidy every single piece of the land as well as tending the plantation.” 

“You may see it’s hard but it’s how the village here is monitored. I hope every village in Samoa would do the same.”

He went on to say that the biggest challenge of his life is being separated from his family. 

“I haven’t seen them for more than 10 years now. We went separate ways when the kids were too young and up till now I haven’t heard from them.” 

“I hope they are okay and I hope we will get to meet someday soon.” 

“Sometimes losing my family is the most important motivation for me to go on with because I still believe there is hope.” 

“Right now, I’m living with my sister’s family at Vaiusu and I help them provide for the kids.” 

“My work here is important, for all you may know it’s hard to find a job nowadays so I treasure my work here as if it’s the only work available for me. Actually it is.”

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