Cook Islands Voyaging Canoe Sets Sail For Australia

admin's picture

Vaka Marumaru Atua to join others on way to IUCN congress

RAROTONGA, Cook Islands (Cook Islands News, Sept. 24, 2014) – Voyaging vaka Marumaru Atua and her crew of 15 warriors will set sail at 10am today to add the nation’s voice discussions at an upcoming conference in Australia.

The double hulled vaka and crew will take part in the ‘Mua: Guided by Nature’ voyage to the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) Worlds Park Congress in Sydney, which will be held in November.

Today the canoe will head to Apia, Samoa, where it will join the Gaualofa – a Samoan traditional voyaging canoe.

Together, they will then be moving on to Fiji to join the nation’s flagship vaka, Uto Ni Yalo.

This significant voyage will convey regional messages about the critical need to respect and protect important natural places and continues the "Pacific Voyage: One Pacific Voice" campaign, originally initiated by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme.

The aim is for the canoes to sail under the Sydney Harbour Bridge and put the Pacific issues on the map and highlight the message from the Pacific.

The message is, climate change, and healthy oceans.

According to the IUCN, voyaging societies from New Zealand and Tonga are also participating.

The vakas on the ‘Mua: Guided by Nature’ voyage – ‘Mua’ meaning to journey or travel in a certain direction and also referring to the bow of a canoe – will be continuing to Vanuatu and the eastern coastline of Australia, with canoes joining in throughout the voyage.

Organisers hope to have the world’s attention when the fleet is scheduled to sail into Sydney Harbour on November 12 for the opening of the congress.

"Conveying this ‘one Pacific voice’ to the IUCN World Parks Congress 2014 is critical, as the Congress – the landmark global forum on protected areas, held once every 10 years – is being held in Oceania for the first time," says a release by the IUCN.

"The Congress provides the opportunity to amplify the region’s call for an extraordinary commitment from the global community to manage the oceans for the benefit of all, and to demand greater action from the rest of the world to combat climate change."

The IUCN Congress takes place in Sydney from November 12-19.

The Cook Islands crew sailing on Marumaru Atua are – Peia Patai, Steven Daniel, Ngateina Mackenzie, Amosa Paul Tatuava Tatuava, Elijah-James Hanita Pakoti, Temanava Terito Elizabeth Macquarie, Jamaal Konito Daniel Pakoti, Joshua Moi Tearamoana Orika, Luther Pat Berg, Harry Charles Fredrick Goodwin, Samuel Raymond Timoko, Miriam Corine Hutchings, Taiau Joseph Clint Jean-Baptiste Tauira, Sergio Lai and Maurai Jonathan Villa.

Cook Islands Voyaging Society president Ian Karika will be joining the crew in Brisbane and vice president Tua Pittman, a traditional master navigator, will be joining the crew in Sydney.

Pittman will be attending the Silver Seas Expedition from Guam to Easter Island, something he had committed to before the current voyage was organised.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment