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Manono returns to normal

The residents of Manono Island are excited to feel that the place has finally returned to normality after sea transportation resumed last week under a changed state of emergency conditions.

Soon after the lockdown, the island had been subject to an inter-island travel ban, with only exceptions for necessary travel.

Speaking to Samoa Observer, the Village Mayor, Lesa Tominiko said the Village found it hard to adapt to the changes during the lockdown.

“Everyone had to make sure that they do their shopping once a week and by one member of each family,” he said.

“Though the lockdown was a boost for families to redevelop their plantations for survival, people are still used to travelling to Apia not only for shopping but for work.”

During the lockdown, the majority of the workers who reside on the island had moved to the mainland in Upolu to ensure they wouldn't lose their jobs in Upolu.

One of them is Emosi Emosi who works at Frankie’s Wholesale. He moved to his brother and wife’s house in Vaitele to allow him to keep his job.

Speaking to the Samoa Observer on Saturday, Mr. Emosi who has returned to Manono to his family said it was hard to send food supplies back on the island due to the lockdown with no public or sea transportation.

But on every Thursday when the traffic boats were allowed to take supplies between the islands, Mr. Emosi would save up $80 for his taxi fare to deliver family supplies. 

According to Mr. Emosi, the majority of the workers from Manono who temporarily stayed in Upolu for their work during the lockdown have now returned to the island.

“I guess the majority of them did not live with their relatives but their friends and families of their in-laws like my situation and that’s why they’d rather go back to the island and return to waking up early to catch the bus,” he added.

One of the challenging experiences for the Manono families was the lack of electric supplies.

Fortunately, residents of the island are used to depending on candle lights during stormy weather.



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