Thursday will be national day of mourning in Tonga to mark state funeral service for Pōhiva

    Fakahoko fakapule'anga e me'afaka'eiki 'o 'Akilisi Pōhiva' pea 'aho mālōlō fakapule'anga 'a e Tu'apulelulu kaha'u' 'a ia 'e fakahekeheka ai 'ene folau'.

    The state funeral service for Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pōhiva will be held at the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga Centenary Church (Saione) this coming Thursday.

    Hon. Pōhiva will be buried at the Telekava Cemetery at Kolomotu’a.

    Thursday has been declared a public holiday and a national day of mourning.

    Family prayers are being held at the Davies Funeral Parlour in Auckland, New Zealand this evening.

    Tomorrow evening, a memorial service will be held at the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga – Tuingapapai – in Mangere, New Zealand.

    Hon. Pōhiva’s body will be flown to Nuku’alofa on Tuesday afternoon on a Royal New Zealand Air Force aircraft.

    His body will lie in state at the St George Building throughout the evenings of Tuesday and Wednesday.

    The first prayer service on Tuesday will be conducted by His Majesty’s Government to be followed by congregational prayer services and public viewings.

    A detailed programme, including the order of congregational prayer services and public viewing times will be announced on Monday morning.

    ‘We are still great’

    Meanwhile, Cook Islands Prime Minister Henry Puna has added his voice to the tributes paid to the late Tongan leader.

    “It is with a deep sense of sadness that we hear of the passing of Tongan Prime Minister Right Honourable ‘Akilisi Pohiva in Auckland this week,” Hon. Puna said.

    “Despite his illness he stood by his compelling values of responsibility and represented the Kingdom of Tonga at the Pacific Leaders Forum in Tuvalu only a month ago.

    “There he made what would be his final stand on the issues of regionalism and climate crisis.”

    The Cook Islands Prime Minister said Hon. Pohiva’s life captured the Tongan proverb, “Si’i pe kae hā”: “Though we may be small, we are still great.”

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