New Zealand’s Waitangi Day Celebrated In Samoa

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New Zealand’s Waitangi Day Celebrated In Samoa Kiwi National Day’ celebration shows friendship between countries

By Timuiaipaepaetele Sa Tapaleao

APIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer, Feb. 8, 2014) – New Zealand’s national day, Waitangi Day, was celebrated in Samoa on Wednesday night.

The Office of the New Zealand High Commission at Letava hosted the celebration. Waitangi Day is celebrated every year on the 6th February in New Zealand. It is when all New Zealanders commemorate the signing of the treaty of Waitangi at the Bay of Islands in 1840.

The day is regarded as New Zealand’s National Day. The celebration at Letava was attended by Prime Minister, Tuilepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, Members of Parliament and many New Zealanders living in Samoa.

A proud Kiwi living in Samoa, Julienne Isa’ako, says Waitangi is a special day for all New Zealanders wherever they are. For High Commissioner, Ms. Frizelle, Waitangi is not just about celebrating New Zealand. It is also a day to acknowledge friends of New Zealand, including Samoa.

"A year ago I was privilege to welcome the Manu Sevens team before I took up my role here," she said.

"There was no better introduction than that Samoan warmth, passion, pride and seeing the way the New Zealand community embrace these heroes. Nobody prepared me for how vibrant, busy, creative and progressive Samoa is.

"The highlights for me though are the many inspirational people such as Jordon (Milroy), who has Cerebral Palsy climbing to the top of the Sky Tower in Auckland.

"Samoan Chefs for using their creativity and professionalism to put local food on the map." Prime Minister Tuilaepa acknowledged the "historical close economic partnership" between Samoa and New Zealand. He also thanked New Zealand for its help during "many times of disasters."

"The Samoan community of New Zealand shall remain a key part of the relationship between our countries long into the future. "To the government of New Zealand our gratitude for the generous assistance being provided to Samoa to support the hosting your third United Nations Small Islands Developing States meeting in Apia this coming September."

But Samoa and New Zealand celebration is complete without talking about rugby.

"Finally, I am putting on my hat as the Chairman of the Samoan Rugby Union, I would like, on the occasion on this national day to congratulate New Zealand for winning the 2013 IRB Sevens World Series "This weekend is the prestigious Wellington Sevens and we do wish the All Blacks success for there home tournament but only for as long as they don’t play the Manu."

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