Why have youth become a burden to villages and families?
Village Voice caught up with Leaunoa Tuitama of Moamoa who claims a perspective on youth problem around the village and with families.
Aged 59, Leaunoa says the negative behaviour of most the youth has increased in Samoa and the fact that youth are treating it as normal concerns him a lot.
“This is not new in Samoa and it worries us.
“I think we should step up to prioritise this matter and we must make a change.
“We’ve been seeing and hearing about different crimes committed by the youth because they take their chances to enjoy life
“There’s not a single space in town where you won’t notice young people smoking, drinking and involved in some sort of trouble, and it’s particularly in the urban areas.
“Take a good look around the town areas; you will see teenagers who are street vendors, some hide and drink, and some push people to give them money.
“Their behaviour is offensive to adults especially the tourists.
“Sometimes I just can’t believe who in the world would let their children roam around town at such an age.
“The question is who’s at fault?
“When you think about it, everyone makes his/her own choice.
“I don’t blame parents too much because children are the ones at fault.
“When you reach the age to be at school, this is when you start to make choices, either being in classrooms every day or hanging around the market,
“Sometimes it may be because of poverty in families where parents can’t afford to put children in school.
“There are many cases like that.
“Like a few weeks ago, two young men were charged with theft and arson in relation to a fire that destroyed Coin Save’s Fugalei shop last Saturday.
“This is exactly what I’m talking about; nothing new and it has to change.”
“Working together is the answer,” according to Leaunoa.
“The government together with families and villages must consider this matter first.
“Government should look at the police’s work properly, the village must be serious about punishment, and everyone else should help and encourage one another.
“I know if we work together and try to address the issue seriously Samoa will be in better place because of youth’s role.”