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Oceania Rugby ‘Not Happy’, ‘Unaware’ of Nasilasila Incident

We are extremely disappointed that Nasilasila has been connected with unofficial scrimmage sessions, as we strongly advocate action to reject all forms of abuse and violence against women and girls across all our member unions.
31 Oct 2019 10:00
Oceania Rugby ‘Not Happy’, ‘Unaware’ of Nasilasila Incident

Organisers of the upcoming Oceania Rugby 7s tournament have clarified their stance after an uproar on social media yesterday regarding former 7s player Amenoni Nasilasila pictured playing for the Wardens Rugby Club on Tuesday.

Wardens had a scrimmage session with the Tuvalu Rugby 7s side who are here for the Oceania 7s tournament.

Nasilasila was convicted and sentenced for rape by the High Court in Lautoka last Wednesday.

Oceania Rugby, in a statement, said: “In the strongest terms possible Oceania Rugby condemns violence against women and girls and reaffirm our long-term commitment to promoting improved gender equality in rugby.

“The scrimmage session between the Tuvalu 7s team and the Wardens Team on Tuesday, October 29 occurred outside of the Oceania Rugby 7s tournament window, so we therefore were not aware of Nasilasila’s involvement with the Wardens Team.

“In light of this we have advised all participating teams to make the right decisions in the interest of the tournament and our legacy and advocacy programmes.

“Furthermore, we are extremely disappointed that Nasilasila has been connected with unofficial scrimmage sessions, as we strongly advocate action to reject all forms of abuse and violence against women and girls across all our member unions.”

A shocked Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre Co-ordinator, Shamima Ali, said: “This is a privilege that is allowed to someone that has committed a heinous crime against a woman.

“It is sending out a very bad and wrong message to other rapists who can be glorified in this manner. You can rape women and be convicted and a few days, you are in this glorified position, so therefore it is not a punishment.

“We are shocked and really disappointed in the justice system,” Ms Ali said.

Feedback: ashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj

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