5 Jul 2007

Woman activist in Samoa wants talks to find sexual abuse strategy

3:28 pm on 5 July 2007

A women's activist in Samoa is calling on members of parliament to consult the community and find a suitable strategy to deal with sexual abuse in the community.

This comes after the Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi encouraged discussion in Parliament of increasing social problems like sexual abuse, and questioned what MPs, church leaders and village chiefs were doing about it.

However Lemalu Nele says unfortunately some of those leaders are themselves the perpetrators of sexual offences.

She says while it used to be something people refused to talk about, that's changing now.

Lemalu Nele says the government can do more to help.

"It is something that our government should really look at very seriously, and then debate on a solution, that needs to be done and also discuss the sorts of strategies that really work for Samoa by you know having a nationwide consultation."

Lemalu Nele says anyone affected by sexual abuse should go to the police, and get help from various NGOs.