THE festive season is definitely here.
And 2016 is coming to its close.
The hype that comes with Christmas is evident in Honiara as people went on shopping sprees.
There were families who have already left Honiara to spend Christmas in their villages with relatives.
State institutions and private sector organisations have been holding Christmas parties for their staff over the past weeks.
In two weeks’ time, Christmas Day will be here.
But in the thick of all the excitements, we must remember to keep our homes and properties safe from would-be burglars.
It is this time of the year that burglary and theft normally increase to unprecedented levels.
Already, there were a number of burglary incidents both within Honiara’s commercial and residential areas in recent weeks.
Often, families and businesses lose valuables and goods that are worth thousands of dollars.
This is why every Honiara resident and business house needs to take extra precaution at this time.
Losses from burglaries can be severe for businesses as well as for families.
Businesses may consider putting additional security measures to protect their properties from burglars.
Families going home for Christmas must make sure someone looks after their house while they are away.
Unoccupied homes can be targets of burglars.
Neighbourhood watch is also an excellent strategy to employ at this time.
It involves neighbours watching over each other’s home and quickly reporting to the police any suspicious sightings or activities within the neighbourhood.
Such strategy ensures safer neighbourhood and that homes are protected from burglars.
Christmas should also be a time of peace and reunion.
However, often people take it as a time for drinking parties.
Alcohol is undisputedly a major source of disputes and disharmonies in homes and communities.
It should be avoided or minimised in community gatherings and celebrations.
People, especially youths, must also take responsibility for their behaviour at this time.
Indulging in drinking parties at this time goes against the true spirit and meaning of Christmas.
So let’s keep the peace and act responsibly during this festive season.