Sunday, November 29, 2009

Villagers choose to banish farmers, users - Monday, November 30, 2009

ANY villager found with marijuana or selling the drug will be exiled from the district of Wainunu, Bua, but only after being dealt with by Fijian warlords.

This is a stern warning from Tui Wainunu Ratu Orisi Baleitavea, who believes it's time that chiefs and their people stand up to fight against the illicit drug problem in society.

Known as the red zone in Bua, Wainunu district is a popular marijuana spot that police officers have continuously raided in the past.

The decision to exile any villager found dealing or cultivating marijuana has been agreed to by all village reps, including the minority group who live in the district

Ratu Orisi said although it has been difficult to find anyone dealing in or cultivating marijuana, his decision as high chief was firm and nothing would change that.

He said any villager found guilty would be taken to task in their respective village meetings and traditionally dealt with by chiefly warlords.

This would include spanking and other disciplinary measures before being exiled.

Ratu Orisi said they have uprooted marijuana plants found in farms and forests of Wainunu.

He said the drug cultivation in his district has to stop and such vanua laws would be enforced to deal with culprits and put an end to drug problems.

Ratu Orisi said a lot of problems have been caused by drug users, including criminal activities which affected innocent people.

"For the sake of security and a better future for our people, we will take this stand and ensure that it is followed. It's time we rise up and stop drug problems in our society," Ratu Orisi said.

This is the second district in the Northern Division that has decided to exile villagers found with the drug.

The first was Wailevu Village in Tunuloa, Cakaudrove. The village elders had decided two months ago to exile any villager found with marijuana.

Tunuloa has also been a hotspot drug cultivation area in the province

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