Tongan activist Kefu’s death now treated as homicide

A press release will be released today, Acting Police Superintendent Tevita Vailea told Kaniva News last  evening.

He has refuted social media speculation regarding Kefu’s death as wrong but he did not provide any details about it.

As Kaniva News reported Saturday, unconfirmed reports claimed Kefu’s body was found at a beach in Tatakamotonga.

Kefu worked as a communication advisor for the Tonga Red Cross.

He was also the president of the Tonga Leitis Association and was known to many from all walks of life.


Photo file 


Tonga continues COVID-19 vigilance, with WHO assistance

Tonga has received 24,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine through the COVAX Facility – a partnership between the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and WHO.

At the same time, WHO is continuing to support Tonga’s public health measures, including vigilance to the threat of an outbreak of COVID-19.

In mid-March, 2.9 metric tonnes of medical supplies from WHO and UNICEF were delivered by the World Food Programme-managed Humanitarian Air Service from Nadi, in Fiji, to Nuku’alofa, in Tonga.

“Vaccination is our best hope” – Dr Pafilio Tangitau working on the frontlines in Tonga

Dr Pafilio, a frontline health worker in Tonga, works in the Emergency Department at Vaiola Hospital in Nuku’alofa.

He was one of the first health workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19, after Tonga received its first batch of 24,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses on 31 March, becoming the third country in the Pacific to receive vaccines through COVAX, a global initiative ensuring equitable access for all.

“I have received my first shot of the vaccine and all I felt was a slight pinch, which is the same for any injection or vaccine you receive."

2 men arrested with meth in Tonga

According to Deputy Commissioner Tevita Vailea, a 34-year-old man and a 29-year old man from Nukunuku were apprehended on Tuesday 27 April 2021 with 6.84 grams of methamphetamine, 0.88 grams of cannabis and drug utensils.

Both accused have been charged with possession of illicit drugs and are remanded in police custody to appear in Court at a later date.

“We encourage anyone who may have information about drug related offending to contact 7704660,” Vailea said.


Photo supplied Tonga Police 


Tonga schedules 2 repatriation flights for May

A meeting between the National Emergency Management Committee and the COVID-19 Committee confirmed that there is a repatriation flight from Auckland next week.

The second flight is from American Samoa.

Chief Executive Officer of MEIDECC Paula Ma’u said two repatriation flights scheduled to arrive from Fiji and Brisbane next month have been postponed until further notice.

According to Mau, the postponement is because Fiji has closed its border due to new cases of COVID–19 and the variant is same as the one found in India.

Japan provides additional grant aid to complete Tonga’s early warning system project

The agreement was signed by Prime Minister Rev Dr Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa and the Ambassador of Japan to Tonga, Munenaga Kensaku this week.

The 207 million Japanese Yen (approximately US$1.9 million) additional funding will be used to complete the project.

Ambassador Kensaku said, “Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the new headquarters building of TBC was successfully built and handed over in July, 2020. However, as we are all aware, the NEWS project itself was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the equipment for upgrading TBC’s broadcasting has yet to be installed.”

APTC collaborates with Ministry of Education and Training to enhance TVET outcomes in Tonga

The virtual signing, which took place on 27 April 2021, further extends Australia’s support for vocational education in Tonga.

Under the partnership, APTC and the MET will work jointly to strengthen Tonga’s TVET systems, and contribute towards improved employment outcomes for Tongans by better aligning skills with labour market demands.

This partnership builds on previous collaboration between APTC and the MET through agreements with the Tonga Institute of Science and Technology and the Tonga Institute of Higher Education.

Tonga PM commends Pacific women’s meet for recognizing COVID-19 as cross cutting theme

He said “over 5,000 people (5,367 to be exact) “ in Tonga “have been vaccinated, and will continue until as many as, up to 70% of our people are immunized and protected.”

“During the Covid 19 lockdown, we” (Tonga) “noted a sharp increase of domestic violence.”   

Tonga’s Nishi Trading signs marketing contract with CocoNew Agency

The move follows several discussions as the business adjusts to operating in a COVID-19 environment where face-to-face meeting and physical visits to markets have been restricted.

Plans include a revamp of the existing website and the release of a general trade brochure to be used by registered growers, suppliers and customers.

The activity is funded by the Farmers’ Organizations for Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (FO4ACP) Programme, a joint partnership between the European Union, Africa Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) and Pacific Island Farmers Organisation Network (PIFON).

Tonga to select European based 7s squad

A squad of New Zealand based players has been training under head coach Tevita Tu'ifua for the past three years, which formed the core of teams that have competed in the men's Oceania Sevens Championship, World Sevens Series and Rugby World Cup Sevens.

Tonga Rugby Union CEO Peter Harding said the New Zealand based programme has "kept men's sevens alive for Tonga" but with Covid-19 still prevalent in the Northern Hemisphere, they have decided to only select players who are already currently playing professionally in Europe.