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Ha’apai power reconnected, VOEA Neiafu travels to northern islands

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 23/01/2020

Power has been reconnected to all of Ha’apai after Tonga Power Limited undertook repair works on the power posts and electricity wires that had been damaged in Tropical Cyclone Tino.

The National Emergency Management Office – NEMO Director says these were one of the priorities for the island in the relief effort that has now been achieved, but the assessment of the damages around the country are still being finalised.

The NEMO and related partners are still collecting and finalising data regarding the damage caused during Tropical cyclone Tino.

The NEMO Director – Mafua Maka confirmed the VOEA Neiafu – HMAF Patrol boat will be departing at 12 midnight tonight from His Majesty’s Armed Forces Navy Base – Touliki to take personnel from various agencies to conduct post-disaster assessment in the northern islands in response to TC Tino.

In addition to this, Maka along with a team from related stakeholders have also traveled to Vava’u to carry out their assessments on the island. This follows the teams visit to Niuatoputapu yesterday and Maka says the assessment team visit to Niuafo’ou had to wait for the VOEA Neiafu as the island was not accessible by plane.

Maka says despite the country being in post-disaster operation now, Tonga is still in the cyclone season and can possibly face another cyclone before the end of the season, so he cautioned the public to stay prepared, heed all warnings from the Tonga Met Service, and to take all these warnings seriously.

One of the issues that Police had faced during the cyclone was having to chase youths to return home because there were a number of youths who instead of seeking shelter from the cyclone, were out swimming at the wharf.

The NEMO Director urged the public to heed their advice in times of disasters as these warnings are to help the people stay safe.

Meanwhile, Maka says they’ve received assistance from foreign countries in the form of funding the chartered flights to send the assessment teams to the outer islands immediately after the cyclone passed.

© Radio and Television Tonga News