Digicel Launches Microwave Connectivity to Ha’apai and Vava’u

The islands will now enjoy 5 times faster internet speeds as a result of moving from satellite to microwave connectivity providing superior and unmatched mobile and home broadband experience the same as fibre.

Australian HC inspects disaster relief operations on Ha’apai

The operations were carried out under Tropic Twilight in a joint operation by the Defence Forces of Tonga, New Zealand, USA, France, Australia and China over the past 3 weeks.

Tropic Twilight is an annual joint exercise, led by the New Zealand Defence Force to conduct humanitarian efforts focused on disaster relief.

Tonga's Ha'apai still in need of water tanks

RNZ reports the Defence Force is in Tonga to lead the humanitarian and disaster relief exercise Tropic Twilight which includes engineers from Tonga, China, and The United States.

Lieutenant Colonel Josh Wineera said the Ha'apai group was devastated by the cyclone and water installation is a much needed requirement.

"There's a number of community halls and churches where we've been able to use our engineers to bring in and just assistance with some of those plumbing and some of those engineering type tasks."

NZDF-LED task group launches construction projects in Tonga

Lieutenant Colonel Josh Wineera, NZDF Task Force Commander and Senior National Officer, said construction work being undertaken as part of Exercise Tropic Twilight 2016 was well underway in Lifuka and Foa.

Rebuilt homes in Tonga may be demolished again

Many homes on Ha'apai were destroyed when the topical cyclone hit the island in January.

The Governor of Ha'apai, Mo'ale Finau, believes as many as 300 homes have already been re-built under a reconstruction project funded by the Government and World Bank.

But he says in Parliament yesterday it was revealed that about 15 homeowners have been told their houses have to be demolished because they were not supposed to be built.

Tongan weavers tap into traditional practices

Weavers from the islands of Ha'apai in Tonga are learning a traditional weaving technique unique to the country, with the hope it will help them earn a better living.

The Mosikaka technique is used to make baskets for the royal family.

The South Pacific Tourism Organisation says the aims is to empower the women of Ha'apai, whose people are still recovering from the effects of Cyclone Ian.

It's chief executive, Ilisoni Vuidreketi, says the 15 women undergoing training rely on selling their mats for income and it will they can market their goods to tourists.