Recently I have heard many things regarding the Tourism Development Act. To begin with, the Act is from 2012, it is now 2013. I am sure that there were many consultations held during the development of this Act. Why are we now dredging up a piece of legislation that has already been passed and is now law? These concerns should have been voiced over a year ago when they were drafting the Act!
I honestly do not see what the issue is in relation to the preservation of the reputation of the destination section of the Act. It is purely stating that people cannot write or say anything that is false about Samoa, the operative word being false. It doesn't say you don’t have the freedom to voice your grievances regarding incidents that may have been negative. It only says that if you do so and these negative statements are false then you can be prosecuted.
This is also true of each of us. If someone were to say something false that was negative about me and it cost me job opportunities or loss of customers as a result this is regarded as slander and I in turn can sue you for saying such things. If the statements were in fact true then I would have no leg to stand on.
It is legislation like this that protects Samoa’s reputation. To me stopping people from telling hurtful lies whether it is about me, my friend or my country is a good thing and I do not see what the problem is!