Tongan seasonal workers

Tongan seasonal worker thrilled to be going home at last

Sefita Veamatahau says the news that he and dozens of others are heading home tomorrow is indescribable.

“I’m thrilled and I can’t explain my feelings. I’m very excited to go home,” he says.

"I have a wife and a son that I haven’t seen in a very long time.”

Veamatahau has spent two Christmases away from home since arriving in New Zealand in October 2019, and is looking forward to spending time with his family. 

He's one of seventy Tongan seasonal workers who will be on that flight to Tonga tomorrow.

Tongan seasonal workers plied underage girls in NZ with drugs, booze before sex

The men, part of the Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme, were sent back to Tonga in disgrace earlier this year.

But the teen says the men would summons the girls - three of whom were only 15 - several times a week over a six month period.   

“We were young,” she told 1 NEWS. “We grew up not having anything. When the money came in we just went there, alcohol and drugs, whatever was there we took it.”

She says her family has been ostracised since the Tongan community found out. 

“Everyone is ashamed of what we have done because they put the blame on us.”

Tongan absconders put on flight back home

Sitiveni Junior Uasi and Atonio Patua Kulitapa disappeared on Monday night in a vehicle belonging to their employer, Mr Apple.

They were found yesterday morning at a home in Manurewa, South Auckland.

After a meeting at the Tom Pearce Drive McDonald’s, Auckland Airport, at about 1pm yesterday the duo were told that they have to board the Air New Zealand evening flight to Tonga.

"We want to return together and take them home"

RNZ reports the men were killed after their car was hit by an unladen logging truck as they left work in a Katikati kiwifruit coolstore.

Staff at Aongatete Coolstores placed flowers at the crash site on Wednesday morning before attending a blessing and cleansing ceremony at the packhouse, the last place where most of them had seen the five victims.

Packhouse manager Clive Exelby said there had been a tremendous outpouring of grief.