Reverend Opapo Soana’i takes legal action against defamatory statements

Reverend Opapo Soana’i Oeti

STAFF REPORTERS

APIA, SAMOA – WEDNESDAY 29 MARCH 2017: Reverend Opapo Soana’i Oeti today confirmed that he has taken legal action against defamatory statements made against him and his family on facebook. The same message was published in the Samoa Observer newspaper today.

He told Talamua that the challenge by the “faceless person” behind the message that accuses him of incest “has gone beyond the extreme” and he wants that person to come out and prove in court and even taking DNA tests as the writer said in the facebook post.

The church minister of Siufaga, Falelatai of the last 23 years has been stripped of his ministerial duties by the Elders Committee of the church following differences with the church leaders that stemmed from his daughter Toaipuapuaga who has the stigmata occurrence since Easter last year.

“As I said last week, I have no intention of taking legal action against the Elders and the church as I have much respect for the church. And I have taken the word of the Chairman, to leave it to God who will be the judge on this whole issue,” Reverend Opapo told Talamua today.

“But I am prompted to take legal action against these defamatory statements against me and my family as they have gone beyond the extreme,” he said.

“My children and relatives overseas have contacted me about the seriousness of what that has been posted on facebook.”

He said he also spoke this morning to the Observer newspaper and asked for a retraction and the identity of the writer given the seriousness of the accusations.

Reverend Opapo’s daughter and family are due back from Rome this week.  He also said that they plan to have a special service to celebrate the anniversary of the occurrence at the Siufaga church on Easter, then have the final and parting service with his church of 23 years on the last Sunday of April.

He told the media last week, that since he has been stripped of his ministerial duties, he will return home to serve his family through his matai titles Leilua of Sataua and Lotomalii of Lalomalava villages.

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