SAMOAN MONARCH CELEBRATES 93d BIRTHDAY

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SAMOAN HEAD OF STATE CELEBRATES 93d BIRTHDAY

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Jan. 4) – American Samoa’s Governor Togiola Tulafono and Congressman Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin will today attend the 93rd birthday celebration of Samoa’s Head of State,  Malietoa Tanumafili II.

[PIR editor’s note: Paramount Chief Malietoa Tanumafili II has been Samoa's Head of State since 1963. The head of Samoa's government, which is  a mix of democracy and constitutional monarchy, is Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi.]

Today has been declared a holiday in Samoa and a state luncheon will be held at 11am at the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa Youth Hall in Sogi in Malietoa’s honour.

Those who recently saw him at the dedication of the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa at Sapapalii in Savaii said he was frail but he was able to sit through the ceremonies.

His Highness also officiated matai title investiture ceremonies for his family last week.

Congressman Faleomavaega says Malietoa is the father of Samoans everywhere.

Malietoa Tanumafili is the third-longest serving head of state in the world, after the King of Thailand and the British Queen.

January 5, 2006

Radio New Zealand International: www.rnzi.com

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