Tonga postpones Heilala 2020 because of Covid-19 threat

The Ministry of Tourism has made the announcement the Heilala Festival, which celebrates the King's birthday through various shows and events, will be postponed indefinitely.

The decision comes after the government announced current restrictions towards public gatherings, a practice of social distancing and major events to be banned.

Last week Prime Minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa declared a month-long state of emergency for Tonga, due to the rapid increase of Novel Coronavirus cases in the Pacific.

Tonga Red Cross to give out Covid-19 prevention information

Volunteers have been working with the Ministry of Health to create guidelines tailored to a range of communities in Tonga including families, the elderly, youth and the disabled.

The leaflets include information about prevention, symptoms of coronavirus, and services available to help with any queries about the virus.

Communications Officer Polikalepo Kefu said the main message Tonga Red Cross Society wanted to get across to the public was how to prevent coronavirus.

Messi makes hospital donation

COVID-19 has caused havoc across the globe and subsequently brought the sporting world to a standstill, with more than 418,000 confirmed cases.

With sports largely unable to continue, many clubs and leagues are making decisions to safeguard their financial solvency, with lay-offs and salary deductions becoming more common.

But some high-profile individuals are sacrificing their own money to help the cause, with Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola confirmed to have donated €1million to the Angel Soler Daniel Foundation.

RFU announces £7million aid package for grassroots clubs

Following a virtual board meeting on Wednesday of the governing body running the game in England, CEO Bill Sweeney issued a letter outlining how they hope to tackle the crisis that led to the termination of the 2019/20 season last Friday for all levels of the game below the Gallagher Premiership.

“I am writing to advise you of the actions that have been agreed to offer a support package directly funded from the RFU worth £7m to provide support for community clubs in England,” he said. 

Tonga media group calls for end to spread of fake news

The Media Association of Tonga (MAT) calls on the public to be considerate, compassionate and empathetic during these times.

The journalists who are members of the association, endeavor to bring you credible and correct information.

With regards to social media, the Media Association of Tonga urged the public to wait until the information is official and not breaking news from individuals.

Taina Kami Enoka, association president cautioned those who was spreading fake news to stop it.

COVID-19: 5th case in Fiji confirmed by PM

Bainimarama says the fifth case is a 31-year-old who was in direct contact with the first patient during zumba classes.

She started developing symptoms while in self-quarantine.

Bainimarama added the average age of our 5 cases is just 27 and anyone at any age can be a carrier.

The Prime Minister also stated that the Nadi Airport will be officially closed from tomorrow. 

He went on to say that it is likely that more cases will be confirmed in the future and everyone should be more vigilant.      

Covid-19: State Of Emergency declared in New Zealand

Government officials have given an update on the the Covid-19 national response, the latest health update, border issues and an essential services update.

Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said there were now 205 confirmed and probably cases, and there had been a total of 9780 tests undertaken so far.

Eight people who arrived in Auckland airport yesterday tested positive for Covid-19.

4th case of COVID-19 confirmed in Fiji

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama says early this morning, they confirmed the fourth case of COVID-19.

This patient is not related to our first three cases.

He is a 28 year old Fijian man who arrived back into the country on Saturday from Australia.

Bainimarama says when the man left that Fiji Airways flight FJ916 on March 21st, he was not showing any symptoms of COVID-19.

He says he was advised by health officials at the airport to go straight home and self-quarantine for 14 days.

The Prime Minister says it appears the man did everything right.

Pay cuts 'inevitable' for New Zealand's top All Blacks

With the coronavirus alert level ramping up from level two to three on Monday and moving to level four from midnight Wednesday, the already tenuous Super Rugby replacement competition has been put on indefinite hold, putting further economic pressure on NZ Rugby.

The confirmation today from finance minister Grant Robertson that the Covid-19 financial relief package would be extended to incorporated societies means NZ Rugby will be eligible for a payout but Robinson said tonight what that looked like remained to be seen.

Tonga closes borders amid coronavirus fears

A Ministry of Health statement shows all aircraft expected to arrive in Tonga today Monday 23 until Saturday 28 had been cancelled in a bit to prevent COVID-19 spreading to the kingdom.

Tonga has no confirmed case of coronavirus.

When Prime Minister Pōhiva Tu’i’onetoa announced on Friday Tonga was in a state of emergency over coronavirus pandemic he told reporters the government was raising the alert to another level.