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Salelologa and Salelavalu move to mend relations

Salelologa, SAMOA — A woman vendor from Salelavalu, who sells food items at the Salelologa market, says its business as usual after the violent ransacking incident involving young men from Salelologa at the end of last month.

Janice Mariner was at the market on the day when she says about 30 young men took to ransacking some of vendors at the Salelologa market.

The attack followed an altercation between some young men from Salelavalu and Salelologa.

According to Ms. Mariner, she believes that their section of the market was targeted because they are mostly people from Salelavalu.

“All of us are from Salelavalu so that was the only reason why they actually did all this to us,” she said.

 “There was about thirty of them that came here and started vandalising our area, they were drunk. Without the Salelavalu people in this market, no one would be able to buy food because it’s just us that provide the food to sell.”

Ms. Mariner points out that the violent ransacking occurred after a second video was posted online showing a man from Salelavalu intimidating and abusing a man from Salelologa with a gun. 

“The only reason why they did that was because of the last video that was uploaded showing a man putting a gun to the Salelologa guy’s head. I reckon that was the only reason why they came over.”

According to Ms. Mariner, despite an intervention from the Chiefs in Salelologa over an incident that occurred a few days earlier in which a house was burnt at Salelologa, the tupulaga (youth) of Salelologa took matters into their own hands, after this particular video surfaced.

“The guys from our village burnt the house and its one of those things where they got hurt because Salelavalu came to Salelologa and burnt their house in Salelologa. 

“So all of the chiefs that were here in Salelologa all went to Salelavalu to do a reconciliation but still they came. The kids just came here and tried to prove something to get back them.

Read more at Samoa Observer