15 Jan 2008

High ranking Samoan matai banished from village

10:55 am on 15 January 2008

A high ranking matai and former Member of Parliament in Samoa, Leva'a Sauaso, has been banished from the village of Apolima uta after his son in law was arrested and charged by police with the alleged murder of another villager.

But Leva'a told reporters he is considering challenging the decision in court if the chiefs of the village will not respond within seven days to his letter questioning the eviction of his family.

He says he presented a traditional Ifoga to the family of the victim but it was not him who did the killing.

However, he says he did it to keep the peace and uphold cultural traditions.

Some village sources say the former MP was engaged with disputes with other matais who were behind the decision to impose a ban.