‘Nice guy’ first road victim of 2015 as police ask public to help curb unlicensed drivers

    Family and friends of the first road-crash victim for 2015 in Vava’u are reeling over the death of a “nice guy” known to have had no trouble at all with anyone.

    Tikisinali Kena, 29, was the driver of a mini-bus that was involved in a collision with a rental car on Wednesday.

    Kena was thrown out of the van and lay unconscious at the scene of the accident near his village of Leimatu’a. He died in hospital soon afterwards.

    Kena, who lived in New Zealand, was in Tonga to visit his parents in Vava’u.

    Vava’u Superintendent Netane Falakiseni said Police had charged the driver of the rental car, Vaka Fanua, with reckless driving causing death.

    It is understood that Fanua, 22, from Leimatu’a, was not licensed at the time of the incident.

    Superintendent Falakiseni said unlicensed drivers were becoming a big problem in Vava’u.

    There was fear that the increasing availability of rental cars on the main island of Vava’u would put more unlicensed drivers into the road.

    Falakiseni said people who did not hold a driver’s licenses asked family members or friends who had valid licenses to hire them rental cars.

    Once rented, the cars were given to whoever in their family wanted to drive but did not have a license.

    In January this year the Minister for Land Transport, Hon. ‘Etuate Lavulavu, said 95 percent of drivers in Tonga were unlicensed and only a quarter of the kingdom’s vehicles were registered.

    Of the 4000 vehicles operating in the northern islands of Vava’u, only 200 vehicles were registered.

    No plate numbers

    Falakiseni said many road users in Vava’u were found by Police to be driving vehicles without registration plates on the road.

    Road users pay for the registration plate number and have to wait for a few days before they arrive. Apparently many people cannot wait and take to the road without registration plates.

    Falakiseni took to Facebook this week to call on the people of Vava’u to help keep unlicensed drivers off the streets and to make sure people follow traffic and road transport laws.

    He said Police fined people driving without licenses on the road, but given the size of the force, its officers could not do the works all by themselves. He said they had other commitments and they were asking the public to help.

    One respondent to his post on Facebook suggested that Police could work in partnership with district and town officers to crack down the problem. He said even clergy could be contacted to discuss the matter with their congregations.

    One Vava’uan from New Zealand who had been to Vava’u recently commented on Falakiseni’s post and said that after renting a car on the island he realised the registration was expired.

    He told the rental agency operator about the expired registration, but he was told to take the car and promised that if the Police caught him, the operator would pay the fine.

    Falakiseni did not respond to the comments.

    The Superintendent mentioned Kena’s death, saying people were dying on the road and the community had to work together to stop it.

    Tribute to Kena

    Since Wednesday, Facebook has been flowing with tributes to Kena, who moved to New Zealand to study and stayed on to raise a family.

    His niece Lataisia Tamale wrote: “Our (heart felt) the lost [sic] of a dear uncle Tikisonali Kena a.k.a Tiki Kena (cry emoticon).  It was so saad [sic]  to see the pain that you’ve been through, Si’i mate ofa atu ki ho mata Tiki lahi. God has gained another angel from Pese Hall Kuila Great Grandchildren. Rest In Peace Nali”.

    Another family member wrote: “I can’t stand to see my sister and your babies in pain so I pray that God may look over your little family and comfort them”.

    “Tiki will be missed more for his giving personality, charisma, caring for others, love and most of all his heart.  Twice as big as the state of LEIMATZ (Leimatu’a).  Tiki gave it all every day to each and every one of us and our lives have forever been hollowed without him. You will be missed and remain in our hearts. Rest in peace brother Tiki Kena,” Eshe Kuila wrote.

    One of his close friends wrote that Kena was one of the nicest guys he had ever met.

    The main points

    • Tonga’s main island of Vava’u has suffered its first road death of the year.
    • Tikisinali Kena, 29, was the driver of a mini-bus that was involved in a collision with a rental car on Wednesday.
    • Vava’u Superintendent Netane Falakiseni said Police have charged the driver of the rental car, Vaka Fanua, with reckless driving causing death.
    • It is understood that Fanua, 22, from Leimatu’a, was not licensed at the time of the incident.

    For more information

    Unlicensed driver arrested (Kaniva News)

    Most vehicles in Tonga unregistered (RNZI)

    1 COMMENT

    1. ʻOku lolotonga tangitoupili e mei Leimātuʻa kotoa, fāmili mo e maheni ʻo e fuofua Vavaʻu ke mate he halapuleʻangá ʻi he taʻu 2015 ʻa ia ko e tangata kuo taku ne ʻikai taha ia ʻe kē mo ia.

      Ko Tikisinali Kena taʻu 29 ʻa e fakaʻuli ʻi ha veeni minipasi ne tuiʻi mei mui ʻe ha kā lenitolo ne fakaʻuli atu ai ha taha kuo ʻi ai e tui ne taʻe maʻulaiseni fakaʻuli taʻu 22 mei Leimātuʻa ʻi he Pulelulú.

      Ne ne pekia ʻi fale mahaki hili siʻi pe ia haʻane punakaki ki tuʻa mei he vēní ʻo tokoto ʻikai toe ʻilo ha meʻa ʻi he feituʻu ne hoko ai e fakatuʻutāmakí ofi atu pe ki Leimātuʻa.

      Ne pehē ʻe he Pule Polisi Vavaʻú Netane Falakiseni kuo nau puke ʻa Vaka Fanua fekauʻaki mo e mate ʻa Kená ʻo fakaʻilo ki he fakaʻuli taʻe tokanga ʻo fakatupunga ha mate.

      ʻOku mahino foki ne haʻu ʻa Kena ki Nuʻu Silá ni ʻo ako ai pea ne maʻu fāmili ai pe mo nofo heni.
      Ko ʻene mate ʻeni hili ia haʻane toki ʻaʻahi atu ki heʻene ongo mātuʻá ʻi Vavaʻu.

      Neongo ia kuo fakaeʻa hake ai he meʻa ni foki ʻe Falakiseni ʻa ʻene pehē kuo fakaʻau ke hoko ʻa e fakaʻuli taʻe laisení ʻi Vavaʻú ko ha palopalema lahi.

      ʻOku ʻi ai e manavasiʻi ko e fakaʻau ke faingamālie ange ngaahi kautaha ʻoku nau tuku atu ha meʻalele ke ngāueʻaki ʻe ha taha kae totongi lau taimí pe lenitoló ʻe hoko ia ko ha faingamālie ke lahi ange ai e fakaʻuli taʻe laiseni he halapuleʻangá.

      Pehē ʻe Falakisení ʻoku mahino ko e palopalemá he ʻoku ō ʻa kinautolu ʻoku ʻikai maʻu laisení ʻo alea mo ha nau taha tonu pe maheni ʻoku maʻu laiseni ʻo kole ki ai ke fakafou atu ai ʻenau fiemaʻu kā lenitoló. Pea ko ʻene tō mai pe ki tuʻá pea mavahe e taha maʻu laisení ia kae hoko atu e tokotaha ʻoku ʻikai maʻu laiseni ia ʻo ʻalu he kaá.

      Ko e meʻa leva ʻoku hoko mai ko e ʻikai toe ha taha he fāmili ko ʻení he heka he he kaá tatau ai pe pe ʻoku maʻu laiseni pe ʻikai.

      ʻI Sānuali ʻo e taʻu ní ne fakahā ai ʻe he Minisitā ki he Fefongaʻaki ʻa Tonga he Hala Puleʻangá ko e pēseti ʻe 95 ʻo e kau fakaʻuli ʻi Tongá kotoa ʻoku nau fakaʻuli taʻe laiseni pea ko e vahefā pe ʻe taha ʻo e ʻū meʻalelé kotoa ʻoku lēsisitá.

      Ne toe pehē ʻe he minisitaá ko hono fakakātoa e meʻalele ʻe 4,000 ʻoku ngāue ʻi Vavaʻú ko e meʻalele pe ʻe 200 kuo lēsisitá.

      Pehē foki ʻe Falakiseni ʻoku tokolahi ʻa e ngaahi meʻalele kuo puke he halá ʻoku ʻikai ha peleti fika ia. ʻOku mahino foki ʻoku totongi ʻe he maʻumeʻalelé ʻa e peleti laiseni pea tali hono lēsisita ka ʻe toe tatali ia ai ha ngaahi lauʻaho ke toki maʻu mai ʻa e peleti fiká.

      Ka ʻoku ʻikai toe tatali ʻa e tokolahi ia ko ʻeni ki he peletí nau lele taʻe peleti fika kinautolu.

      Ko e ʻū fakamatala ʻeni ʻa Falakiseni ʻi he Feisipuká mo e kole ki he kakai ʻo Vavaʻú ke nau tokoni ange ʻi hono kumi ha founga ke taʻofiʻaki e fakaʻuli taʻe laisení mei he halapuleʻangá mo fakapapauʻi ʻoku ngāue ʻa e kakaí ʻo fakatatau ki he lao tulēfikí mo fefonongaʻakí.

      Ne ne pehē foki ʻoku fakaʻilo pe ʻe he kau polisí ia ʻa e kau fakaʻuli taʻe laiseni he halá ka ʻe ʻikai lava ʻe he tuʻunga ʻoku ʻi ai e kau polisí ke kei hanga taha pe ki he taʻe laiseni kae tuku e ngaahi meʻa kehe kuopau ke nau ngāue ki ai.

      Ne pehē ʻe he tokotaha ne fakatalanoa hake ki he fakamatala ʻa Falakisení ʻoku totonu ke fengāueʻaki ʻa e kau polisí mo e kau pule fakavahe pehē ki he kau ʻofisa koló pea naʻa mo e kau malangá ke vakaiʻi atu naʻa lava ke nau talangaʻi e palopalemá ni mo honau kāinga lotú.

      Ne pehē e he tangata Vavaʻu ʻe taha nofo Nuʻu Sila ʻi he fakamatala ko ʻeni ʻa e pule polisí ne toki ʻi Vavaʻu pe ʻo ne totongi ai ha kiʻi kā lenitolo. Ne ne fakatokangaʻi kuo ʻosi e taimi lēsisitá ia ka ʻi heʻene ʻeke ange ki he taha ʻoʻona e kautahá ne ne pehē ke ʻalu pe ia ai peá ka maʻu ʻe he kau polisí pea toki ʻomai pe ia ke ne totongí.

      Ne ʻikai ha tali ʻa Falakiseni ki he lau ʻa e tokotahá ni he Feisipuká ka ne fakamanatu hake e pekia ko ʻeni ʻa Kená ʻo ne pehē kuo mate honau kakaí he halá pea kuopau ke nau ngāue fakataha ke taʻofi.

      Kaekehe ko e talu foki e pekia ʻa Kena he ʻaho Pulelulú mo e hangē ha haá e lauʻaitu ʻa e fāmilí mo e ngaahi maheni ʻi hono tengihiá pea ʻasi ʻa hono ʻofeina lahi ʻo e pekiá ni tautefito ki he ngaahi fakatamala fiekaungā mamahi kuo tuku hake he Feisipuká.

    LEAVE A REPLY

    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here