Tonga's Queen Mother Halaevalu Mata‘aho Laid To Rest In Royal Tombs

Country in 10 days of mourning for consort of Tupou IV's consort

By Pesi Fonua, Linny Folau and Peter Poulsen

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (Matangi Tonga, March 1, 2017) – Tonga's Queen Mother, the late Queen Halaevalu Mata’aho, consort of Tupou IV, was laid to rest at the Royal Tombs, Mala'ekula in what is a very quiet capital, Nuku'alofa this afternoon.

This morning at the seaside Royal Palace, the Queen Mother's casket was conveyed by the bearer party to the Royal Catafalque, and under the charge of the traditional Royal Undertaker.

The Royal Catafalque left the Royal Palace at 9:30am in a slow procession along Hala Tu'i to Mala'ekula, the Royal Tombs, with the bearers rotated from about 1000 men- the 'Kau Fata', drawn from the Free Wesleyan Church and relatives of the Queen Mother.

HM King Tupou VI and Queen Nanasipau'u, with the king's sister Princess Sālote Mafile’o Pilolevu Tuita and other members of the Royal Family followed on foot behind the catafalque.

Thousands of students and mourners lined both sides of Hala Tu'i bowing their heads in respect for the Queen Mother as she made the final journey to her resting place at the Royal Tombs, where her husband Tupou IV, and sons Tupou V and Hon. Ma'atu are interred. 

[PIR editor's note: On March 2, 2017 RNZI reported that 'Ten days of national mourning is now being observed in Tonga following the death of the Queen Mother.']

Foreign dignitaries attending the Royal Funeral included Samoa's Head of State, Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi and Masiofo Filifilia,the Maori King Tuheitia and Makau Ariki Atawhai, HE Ratu Epeli Nailatikau and Adi Koila, and Samoa's Deputy Prime Minister Hon Fiame Naomi Mataafa.

Matangi Tonga has many photos of the funeral ceremony in Nuku‘alofa.

Matangi Tonga Magazine
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