31 Dec 2011

New Zealanders recognised for Pacific links in New Years Honours list

9:56 am on 31 December 2011

A number of New Zealanders with close links to the Pacific have been recognised among this years New Years Honours recipients.

They include Eseta Fifita Finau and Professor Tony Angelo, who have been made Officers of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Eseta Finau is President of the Tongan Nurses Association of New Zealand and has spent much of her life improving nursing services for Pacific people.

Tony Angelo is a Law Professor at Victoria University in Wellington and has provided legal services to a number of small Pacific states.

The Angelo South Pacific Postgraduate Educational Scholarship was established in recognition of these links.

Sadly one of the New Year Honours recipients , Lua Kava Lepaio, passed away on Boxing Day.

He had been made a Member of the Order for services to the Tokelauan community in Porirua, spanning more than 50 years.

The Queen's Service Medal was awarded to Pati Umaga, the chair of the Wellington Pasefika Disability Network, Winifred McLelland, who'd been involved with helping the Tongan commmunity in Dunedin for more than 50 years,and Metuakore Bates-Faasisila in recognition for her services to the Cook Islands community in Auckland.