Aiolupotea Tony Aiolupotea: "Unity is our strength"

Over 40 years ago, Aiolupotea Tony Aiolupotea was unofficially bestowed the ‘Toeaina’ title by the 1978 Samoa College entry class.

According to fellow classmate, Nanai Tuiletufuga, no one took it seriously including the Toeaina himself. 

Today, Aiolupotea is the Fofoga O Ali'i, or cultural spokesman for the Class of '81 reunion taking place in Auckland this week, a position he also served back in 1981.

As fate had it be, Aiolupotea followed in his father’s legacy as a community leader, eventually becoming a Member of Parliament and a Cabinet Minister.

Speaking at the reunion, he said, "This is a legacy we want our children to appreciate and follow. Our classmates in Samoa each have their own duties and responsibilities but networking with one another professionally and personally is very uplifting.” 

“Our strength is our unity as a group, not as individuals. We all have our special field of professions as reflected by the diversified professions and their career paths in the Classmates of 1981.And our respect for one another is the most important component.”

Hailing from the village of Palauli, Aiolupotea said he was thankful for the rare opportunity to congregate as a class together.

He is listed as the first Samoan to graduate with a Masters in Food Safety from the University of Veterinary Medicine and Agriculture, from Hokkaido, Japan, complemented by a Bachelor of Applied Science from the University of Queensland, Australia.

Aiolupotea serves as the Assistant CEO in charge of Samoa’s Livestock Division, for the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, and celebrates his 27th anniversary this year, as a loyal public servant. 

 

Photo supplied. Caption: Aiolupotea Tony Aiolupotea speaking at the reunion gathering Wednesday. 

 

 

Photo supplied. Caption: Aiolupotea Tony Aiolupotea speaking at the reunion gathering Wednesday. 

 

     

Author: 
Shivani Sharma