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Sculpture of Tu’i Tonga ‘Aho’eitu unveiled at St George Government Building

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 08/07/2019

The Tongan High Commissioner to Australia – Her Royal Highness Princess Latufuipeka Mata’aho unveiled a sculpture of Tu’i Tonga ‘Aho’eitu on Friday morning at the forecourt of the St George Government Building.

This sculpture is the work of Brigham Young University faculty member – Professor Viliami ‘Asipeli Toluta’u presented as a gift from the University.

At the program the Prime Minister – ‘Akilisi Pohiva says he was approached by Professor Toluta’u in 2018 proposing to create this sculpture and  one of the reasons he accepted was the fact that His Majesty King Tupou VI was christened Prince ‘Aho’eitu and that Tonga would be celebrating His Majesty’s 60th birthday this year.

Pohiva says they planned to have the sculpture installed in Popua because the history of ‘Aho’eitu, the first Tu’i Tonga is centred on Popua and its neighboring islands of Siesia and Nukunukumotu, but bad weather had hindered the work and so the sculpture was then arranged to be installed temporarily at the forecourt of St. George Government Building. However after the installation of the scuplture it was agreed that the sculpture would remain permanently at the St George Government Building.

At the unveiling Professor Toluta’u elaborated on the story of ‘Aho’eitu the first Tu’i Tonga, clarifying on some of the myths and facts of the story.

The sculpture was then blessed by the president of the Free Constitutional Church of Tonga – Rev. Kinitoni Mafi.

Diplomatic corps, cabinet ministers, and several guests attended the occassion.

© Radio and Television Tonga New