On the front page of yesterday’s Weekend Observer, the main story’s bold headline reads: “P.M. accuses lawyers”.
Accompanied by a photograph of Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, facing the camera, the story reveals that at the time, he was addressing Parliament.
In fact, he was speaking in the House of Representatives during its deliberations, pertaining to its present Supplementary Budget.
During his address though, Tuilaepa took the time to launch an “attack on lawyers” whom he accused of “posting lies on Facebook, with the sole intention of misleading members of the public.”
The story said Tuilaepa did not name the lawyers he was referring to, other than to express how clearly unhappy he was with the way the social media, was being abused to attack senior government leaders.
And then without elaborating, he went on to say: “If you continue to lie, lie, lie to the public on Facebook, eventually people will believe it.”
Indeed, he went on to warn, that: “Even one who is well educated will fall for these lies.”
He’s probably right.
Still, what might have been the case had not the government insisted on bringing back the law of Criminal Libel, which had been abolished way back in 2013, solely so that it can use it to hunt down so-called “Ghost writers” who, as far anyone is aware, they do not exist, and yet it is now causing so much silly turmoil it is driving Samoa’s Prime Minister, and Members of his Cabinet quite insane?
Incidentally, when the Law of Criminal Libel was brought back, the government’s Press Secretary, told the country it was part of efforts to address the growing number of “ghost writers” who use fake social media pages, to attack members of the public.
Incidentally, one of the pages was known as “Ole Palemia”, the Prime Minister.
Wrote the Press Secretary then: “The Police had launched an investigation to find out who is responsible for this page, but then up until now they have not been successful.”
“There are other pages though so that today the government has had enough.”
He also revealed: “The intention is not only to protect the privacy of the individuals and the general public from unsubstantiated, vicious and inciting allegations posted by ghost writers on the social media, but to safeguard and ensure peace and harmony in the country remain intact.”
As for Prime Minister Tuilaepa, he revealed that after the law of Criminal Libel had been abolished, “some have abused their freedom to express their views and in particular, there were those defamatory allegations posted on social media.”
He also said: “Some of these postings could lead to violent confrontation which may eventually cause misery to families, so that the government will not stand by any longer.”
He revealed: “There are 4,500 hackers in Samoa. Some are children and even lawyers are among the best hackers in the country.”
And now he warned: “To find those writers who are hiding behind anonymity, by using their freedom of expression to vent their vile and demeaning allegations on social media, will no longer be tolerated. They should be warned now that their days of mischief are numbered.”
According Tuilaepa though, the trick is simple enough, and he explains: “Those hackers will be used by the government to track down ghost writers. It is like using a thief to catch a thief.”
Still, how many ghost writers are we talking about here?
Since as far as we’re all aware, all those 4,500 hackers in Samoa - if we are to accept Tuilaepa’s estimation - are interested only in hacking just one ghost, and his name is “Ole Palemia”.
Sure, there are other ghosts in Cabinet and in Government Offices too, but then they can easily be disposed off anyway.
Not O le Palemia though. This one’s stamina is, without a doubt anyone’s mind, tougher than nails.
Still, Tuilaepa believes he knows who the Bloggers who’ve been calling themselves “O le Palemia” were.
“They’re lawyers,” Tuilaepa said. “They’re lying. That is what they’re doing. And yet they are well educated and they are lawyers. I know all of them.”
During one of his interviews with the Samoa Observer, Tuilaepa talked about “Mein Kampf”, the book that had been written by the Nazi Party leader, Adolf Hitler.
He said the book “shows what when you put effort in lying to someone, you continuously lie until one believes the lies; that is the psychology behind this whole thing”.
Tuilaepa then said: “The posts on Facebook were lies and that was Hitler’s philosophy.”
“Even the smartest people believed Hitler, the German scientists eventually believed Hitler.”
“The philosophy of ‘Mein Kampf’ as well as Hitler’s, is how to make people believe you, even a very stupid lie, they will believe you, if you keep on repeating and repeating yourself.”
Now is that so?
Is he saying that smart Samoan people such are lawyers are the way they are today, because they have brilliant minds such as that of Adolf Hitler’s whose rule of terror during his time, caused the death of six millions of Jews?
Still, now that Tuilaepa has revealed that he knew who the Bloggers who’d been calling themselves “O le Palemia” were, why did he not do so publicly then?
Indeed, had he done so then, wouldn’t the problems that are now causing him so much worry and unnecessary aggravation, been swept well out of the way then?
He didn’t say.
All that Tuilaepa said was: “What I am worried about is their safety. We all have families including those who are off in the head, and they are the ones who are after these people, who continue to defame us.”
“It will not end well if they are caught,” he explained. “And that is why I’m protecting them although it is very demeaning what they’re saying.”
He said: “Good governance, transparency and accountability, are essential tools in any democracy. It’s a principle this Government adheres to.”
Wonderful! Well said!
Now let’s see if we can start practising to walk the talk!
Have a peaceful Sunday Samoa, God bless!