The Police Spokesperson, Su’a Muliaga Tiumalu, has swiftly moved to set the record straight with regards to a photo of a Police vehicle carrying furniture.
The photo making rounds on social media and published in the Samoa Observer raised the question of the abuse of public property by the Police.
But Su’a said the Police vehicle, POL35, was carrying furniture recovered by the Police. They had been stolen from a family’s home during the festive season.
“The furniture belongs to a member of the public who lodged a complaint to the police office about his homeware stuff that were stolen,” he said.
“The police recovered it in one of the villages in the Tuamasaga District.
“So on that day this vehicle went to get the homeware stuff and furniture from the home of the person who stole them.”
The furniture remains in the possession of the Police to await the rightful owner to claim them.
Su’a went on to say that in matters like this, the Police vehicles are allowed to carry these things.
“That is the only time that police vehicles are allowed to do such work,” he said.
“I also want to reiterate to the media that it is very important to contact the Ministry and to ask for an explanation with regards to issues like this.
“The paper should’ve called and asked for an explanation before they run the photo because this has left a black mark on the Ministry and the people are now accusing the Ministry of abusing the Ministry vehicles.
“But that is the truth and that’s what happened. The vehicle was not used for a personal errand. It was used as part of a Police case.”