19 Mar 2019

Auckland's Pasifika Festival cancelled

11:11 am on 19 March 2019

Auckland's Pasifika Festival has been cancelled, as police are stretched thin providing security after the Christchurch terrorist attacks.

Cook Island dancers at Pasifika Festival 2018

Cook Island dancers at Pasifika Festival 2018 Photo: RNZ Pacific / Sela Jane Hopgood

Yesterday, Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development said the event would go ahead this weekend to "unite communities."

But in a statement this morning, general manager Steve Armitage said New Zealand police must prioritise resourcing to ensure public safety.

He said Pasifika will return bigger and brighter than ever in 2020.

The cancellation of both days of Pasifika, one of the biggest Pacific cultural festivals in the world, follows the scrapping of Pacific dance festival Polyfest's third and biggest day last Saturday.

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