Soakai Motu’apuaka, 60, a Deputy Commissioner of Community has retired from Tonga’s Ministry of Police after serving for 35 years.
Deputy Commissioner Lau'aitu Tupouniua in a statement read at a farewell occasion for Motu'apuaka says Motuapuaka joined the Tonga Police Force on August 14, 1978 after serving in the United States Army with a diploma.
He started as a corporal police officer before being promoted to Sergeant of Police in 1984.
Motu'apuaka became an Inspector of Police, Assistant Chief Inspector of Police, Chief Inspector, Assistant Superintendent and Assistant Police Commander, before his final promotion as the Deputy Commissioner of Community Policing this year.
He attended the New Zealand Police College in Porirua in 1994 and graduated as a police cadet.
In his farewell speech the outgoing Deputy Commissioner of Police was emotional and said:
“This has been my life for the last 35 years.”
Motu’apuaka was also praised for his contribution to Tonga’s rugby union while being a policeman.
He was one of the key players in the Force’s 1st XV team in which at one stage he became captain.
Motu'apuaka also joined Tonga’s National Rugby Union Team ‘Ikale Tahi.
An earlier version of this story said Lautoa Faletau read 'a statement in a farewell ocassion for Motu'apuaka. The person who read the statement was Lau'aitu Tupouniua according to the Tonga Police Media and Communication Officer.