SFA: There is no room for bullying young faafafine’s


The Samoa Fa’afafine Association has condemned actions by college students bullying a young fa’afafine, in their school uniforms, inside a restroom stall. In a statement issued, the SOFIA posted a screenshot of the video clip posted on TikTok and the calls on the relevant organizations to take action immediately. 

President of the SFA, Alex Su’a says they are another front-liner advocating to “say NO to domestic and gender-based violence” after a video clip that was first posted in 2019 recently went viral. 

The SFA pointed out the young fa’afafine was bullied at school and is also a victim of cyberbullying and these types of actions shouldn’t be tolerated. 

According to the SFA, the young fa’afafine was cornered at the toilet, defensively fending off three young boys attempting to reach out to the fa’afafine’s private parts. 

“The young boys were not only blocking the fa’afafine from leaving the toilet booth, they were taunting the fa’afafine with offensive comments such as “do you have a boy or a girl’s genitals? … why do you sound like that? …” 

“The fa’afafine was naturally a soft spoken young person, was making attempts to leave but the young boys kept blocking his way while demanding him to admit he has a penis and that he must sound like a man.

The fa’afafine who had no choice but to leave, had to admit that he has a penis and that he had to speak in the tone of a man,” says the SFA statement. 

According to the statement the video was initially posted on TikTok and then it was posted on a Facebook page called ‘Fiafia ma le Ata’. 

“The, sad yet not surprising aspect of this video is the comments that followed this video on social media. “Most are encouraging and accepting comments impressing a message ‘that this incident is obviously acceptable’ and that the fa’afafine must sound like a man. 

“That these are acceptable acts of young boys. There are apparently lots of laughing emoji reactions as well.” 

The SFA stands to condemn this incident and these acts “which is grossly unacceptable at all levels.”  Furthermore, the SFA says the posting of this video on social media for people to laugh at is an act of cyberbullying. 

“The incident that was recorded on the video is a pure act of bullying and sexual harassment. 

“It is also arguably an act of attempted indecent assault. It is another prime example of gender-based violence of which a victim is a young person who expresses himself effeminately or in the manner of a woman i.e. a fa’afafine.” 

The SFA pointed out that despite the incident that occurred in 2019, that is beside the point, that bullying and discrimination are unacceptable. “However, its response to the video is beyond the issue of timing and who was involved. 

“SFA is vigilant to remind that any form of violence against anyone is grossly unacceptable and must be shamed with disgust and labeled as cowardly. 

“It remains committed to ensuring its community of fa’afafine and fa’atama are able to enjoy life as they are without fear of all or any form of violence and discrimination.” 

Furthermore, the SFA is also calling upon its networks, partners and stakeholders to stand by its advocacy and to acknowledge that gender-based violence against fa’afafine and fa’atama exists yet at the most underground level. 

“It strongly stands to stamp out this attitude which creates a culture that this act is acceptable at home, school and workplaces.”