US navy delivers entertainment and aid to Samoans

The vessel had a multinational force of sailors, engineers, medical specialists and musicians. It was part of an annual operation known as the Pacific Partnership - annual humanitarian and outreach program in its eighteenth year running.

"Our relationship with these countries that we visit is most important," US Embassy in Samoa's charge d'Affaires Noriko Horiuchi said.

"Relationships with countries should not just be government-to-government, it should also be people-to-people.

Pacific community in Auckland grieves shooting victims


Solomona To'oto'o, 45, of Manurewa and Tupuga Sipiliano, 44, of Wattle Downs have been named as the victims of 24-year-old gunman Matu Reid, who also died.

Several others were injured, including a police officer.

The Samoa Observer reports friends and relatives of the two victims took to social media to express their condolences, and relatives of Sipiliago sent messages to the victim's wife and children as they mourned.

Pacific sport stars get behind mass vaccination events in Auckland

The 'Rally Your Village' initiative wrapped up at Auckland's Vodafone Events Centre yesterday, with more than 7000 people immunised over six days.

More events in the community are being organised, and former All Black Bradley Mika is among some of the sports stars making calls to encourage the unvaccinated to get a jab.

Former Manu Samoa halfback Junior Poluleuligaga is doing his bit to get the rugby community in south Auckland vaccinated.

28 Samoans in NZ receive scholarships under Toloa Programme

The recipients will pursue studies in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).  

Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio said more Pasifika are embracing STEM opportunities, paving a pathway to educational success.

Now in its sixth year, the Ministry for Pacific Peoples (MPP) Toloa Programme is achieving its goal of helping Pacific Aotearoa to thrive.

“Our aim has always been to see Pacific communities in Aotearoa prosper, and encouraging more people into STEM-related study and jobs is a way to do this,” said Minister Sio in a statement.

Samoan PM says some still not taking Covid-19 serious

During his weekly national radio address, Tuila'epa said 50 people were not allowed to board a repatriation flight last Friday because they did not

meet proper Covid-19 travel requirements.

''This means they are not worried by the pandemic, but it is nothing for anyone to play around with,'' he said.

The prime minister said some passengers turned up without the required health test evidence while others had documents but without signed verification from medical professionals.

He said subsequently there were 50 wasted vacant seats that others could have used.

Samoan victims of trafficking granted NZ work visas

The three are among other Pacific Islanders who had their visas approved by Immigration New Zealand.

Immigration New Zealand said the 16 people from Fiji and Samoa were approved for their visas between July 2016 and July 2019.

RNZI reports in total, there were 17 successful applications - including from one person who made multiple applications.

Immigration's visa services manager, Michael Carley, said overall there were 92 individual applications decided under the category since 2016.

Samoa and American Samoa agree to address overcrowding in prison

A communiqué released after a meeting between the two governments this week said Samoa is looking to draft legislation to deal with Samoans who are deported from overseas.

They also recognised the need for improved information exchange relating to deportees, including advanced notice and criminal records.

The majority of prisoners at American Samoa's corrections facility are Samoan nationals.

Calls for calm as tensions rise among Tongan and Samoan rugby league fans

Police have confirmed they have received calls regarding "celebrations'' in parts of Auckland, particularly in Otahuhu, where vehicles decked out in national flags have been lining the streets and beeping horns continuously.

Groups of supporters have also turned out in force on a daily basis.

After Mate Ma'a Tonga's thrilling win against Scotland on Sunday, legions of fans and supporters turned out to the streets of Otahuhu to celebrate.

Samoans encouraged to lift taboos

Samoa has had a number of incidents this year involving babies abandoned at birth or mothers committing infanticide.

The director of the Seventh Day Adventist Development and Relief Agency Su'a Julia Wallwork said with the rise in sexual violence and abuse within communities, more support was needed.

"Sometimes it's the social pressures that makes these young girls do these things," said Su'a Wallwork.

Health services need to do more to help Samoans at risk of heart disease

Tua Taueetia-Su’a, an experienced practice nurse and primary health organisation researcher, has dedicated the last three and a half years to researching Samoan people’s knowledge and understanding of cardiovascular disease (CVD), its risks, risk assessments, and the reasons behind their decisions to undertake or abstain from making necessary lifestyle changes.

“Cardiovascular disease is prevalent among Samoans, and in fact all Pacific people. For my research, I interviewed 16 Samoan patients and seven practice nurses in the Wellington region about their experiences.”