8 Aug 2006

Samoan call against firearms

3:09 pm on 8 August 2006

A spokesperson for an NGO helping abused women has supported the call to reduce the number of firearms in Samoa.

During the month of August, the police are running an amnesty and are asking people to hand in unregistered or illegal weapons and ammunition.

A spokesperson for Mapusaga O Aiga, Maiava Visekota Peteru, says incidences involving guns are on the increase.

She says many people now feel they need a weapons to protect themselves or their property despite the traditional role played by village councils in providing security:

"There are incidences where people do not feel that protection, maybe because they feel a decision by council has not been in their favour or has been biased, therefore they have that thinking that well, they need to protect themselves because they are not getting protection from the village council or from other sources."

Maiava Visekota Peteru says the government is looking at bringing in domestic violence legislation that would include a provision allowing the seizure of firearms.