29 Dec 2008

Moderating excess drinking beyond our control, says Samoan social worker following Christmas killing

2:39 pm on 29 December 2008

A Samoan social worker says it's beyond the control of the community to stop people drinking too much alcohol over the Christmas period.

This follows the deaths of at least four people in Samoa, in what police have called separate alcohol-related incidents.

Three were killed on Upolu and one on Savaii, and police say they have arrested and charged four suspects with manslaughter.

Saoliu Tupua of the anti-domestic violence NGO, Mapusaga o Aiga, says it's hard for people at the community level to interfere in someone else's Christmas celebrations if they feel they've drunk too much, apart from calling the police if trouble occurs.

"There is a village mayor, chiefs and orators, who should have some laws in place in the community to control. But if they impose laws in the villages, in the community, and then they go somewhere else and drink, then that's where the problem will be. They won't do it within that village."

Saoliu Tupua