13 May 2009

Samoa's PM calls for village support to protect people from sexual attacks

3:11 pm on 13 May 2009

Samoa's Prime Minister says village councils need to impose tough village penalties on the perpetrators of sex crimes and also report them to the police.

Tuila'epa Sa'ilele Malielegaoi says victims of sexual abuse, especially children must be protected under the authority of village councils.

His comments came during the opening of the Samoa Victim Support Group's new office on Savaii.

Tuila'epa thanked the organisation for its service and for highlighting some of the worse child abuse cases in the country.

The Prime Minister says bringing the issue to the public's attention also acts as a warning for the perpetrators that they cannot escape prosecution.

Several children who are victims of sexual abuse are currently under the care of the organisation.