New Zealand Rugby announces Pacific teams to join Super Rugby Competition

Via RNZ Pacific 

Moana Pasifika and Fijian Drua have been granted conditional licences to join a planned new professional competition next year, New Zealand Rugby has announced.

NZR Pasifika Engagement Manager Saveatama Eroni Clarke, NZR board member Sir Michael Jones, Moana Pasifika Steering Committee co-chair Pelenato Sakalia and Former All Black Sir Bryan George 'BeeGee' Williams announced the move at 2pm this afternoon.

Moana Pasifika is a combined Samoa and Tonga side and is likely to be based in South Auckland, while the Fiji side is set to be based in Suva.

In November, Fijian Drua and Moana Pasifika were announced as New Zealand Rugby's preferred partners to join an expanded 12-team competition subject to a range of conditions, mostly financial, to show that they were capable of funding each franchise to the tune of $10 million a year.

World Rugby last month committed $7 million in funding over the next three years to help fund the two Pacific Islands teams.…more


Mr. Panikeke; The mind behind your favourite "seki hoops"

Who is Mr Panikeke? and what does he have to do with the new Pasifika statement hoop earrings trend going around social media?

You might take a scroll through Instagram nowadays to see girls pridefully wearing hoop earrings with the words “TokoUso” in the centre or a chain necklace with the word “Taro”. The trend of modern Pacific fusion jewelry has taken the market by storm as more and more people look for ways to express their heritage in the way they dress and accessorize. This form of fashion expression has often contained solely seis and elei but with this new generation of urban Pasifika youth, there has been a rise in the popularity of Pacific hoops and chains. If you ask many people where they've gotten these eye-catching statement accessories the answer is often the same… “Panikeke”.  

In the heart of South Auckland, you’ll find the colourful Panikeke store containing gems of the Pacific, from “Teti” hoops to woven handbags. You might have a browse of the store and think it belonged to a big brand chain.…more

Guest Writer


By Va'ai Nah Folasa

Cover photo credit:  Office of the Electoral Commission Samoa 

While Samoa awaits the final counting of votes and the inevitable legal challenges and appeals, what lessons have we learned from Friday's election?

In no particular order...
1. Never underestimate the power of social media. While Government media outlets (2AP and the Savali) touted the HRPP line, the mainstream press played a cautious approach often several days late with breaking issues. Meanwhile social media was active, timely and while not always correct managed to create debate and focus issues at a mass level. FAST embraced various platforms skillfully and effectively. The belated creation of Facebook page by HRPP was too late, too little and missed the mark completely.

2. Understand that youth have a voice and are confident that their vote can make a difference. Previous elections have witnessed several generations of a family voting the same traditional way. Today's youth are informed (refer above), interested and have priorities which differ to older generations. Clearly they are not afraid to express that and seek change.


Humans of the Islands



Teacher / Maori Student Learning Advisor / Singer 

Samoan / Maori 


I’m Jordyn, my Dad is from Whāingaroa (Raglan) and my Mum is from Mulifanua Lalovi (Samoa). I’m married to Thomas Rapana who is from Ngā Puhi and we have a beautiful 4 year old, Toa-Awanuiārangi, who is the absolute best of both of us. 

My family homestead is in Otara, South Auckland, where my Mum and her siblings spent a lot of their childhood after moving from Samoa and my Nana still lives there today. I mostly grew up in South Auckland suburbs, spent a few years of my childhood in Wellington, but Otara will always be home.

At the moment I teach Te Reo Māori night classes and I am a Māori Student Learning Advisor at a theological tertiary institution. I’m passionate about identity, language reclamation and our people thriving in Aotearoa.


What were the pathways that led you to doing music/singing?  

My Dad is a Pastor and we grew up singing in Church, in Worship teams and just with the family.…more


'You've got 18 Maika Sivo's': The story behind the Kaiviti Silktails | Rugby League | NRL

The Kaiviti Silktails have relocated from Fiji to play in the New South Wales Rugby League Ron Massey Cup for a shot at an opportunity in the NRL.

Sporting Australia went behind the scenes to find out just how much effort has gone into this moment, and why you don't want to miss a second.


How to do Pasifika 101

Our guide to Pasifika Festival 2021 

The iconic festival is back after a two year absence and there's a few changes, so we've put together a guide so you can enjoy the world's largest celebration of Pacific Islands culture to the fullest - catch all the live acts you were hoping to see, eat all your favourite island food and enjoy the different Pacific Islands markets. 

Richard Clarke, Head of Major and Business Events at Auckland Unlimited, says there is great anticipation for Pasifika Festival this year. 

“Pasifika is a must-attend event if you want to experience the sights, sounds and flavours of the Pacific. There will be fantastic performances, vibrant costumes and delicious food.”



This is not a drill - Pasifika is NOT at Western Springs this year.

New location:  Mt Smart Stadium on Saturday, 10 April (10am-8pm) and Sunday, 11 April, (10am-4pm)



Pasifika generally attracts up to 60,000 people so you know the area around Mt Smart Stadium will be busy this weekend.…more


Colours of Change: The Panthers Mural Unveiled

The completion of the vibrant Pathers mural project is completed, and adds colour to the streets of Auckland. The artwork was revealed to mark the 50th Anniversary of the Polynesian Panthers. 

The Whakaako Kia Whakaora / Educate to Liberate mural that was completed last week honours the historical presence of the Polynesian Panthers in Tāmaki Makaurau. It acknowledges the connection to the Black Panther Party and is a visual representation of the social justice issues both organisations fought for at that time, and still fight for today.

The Mural Project was inspired by Tigilau Ness and Chris McBride’s journey to the Black Panther Party 50th Anniversary celebrations in Oakland California 2016. The politically charged cultural and artistic landscape across Oakland and San Francisco created the seed to bring their stories alive with inspirational messaging. The Panther Mural Project includes artists Huriana Kopeke-Te Aho, Numa McKenzie, Toa Sieke Taihia in collaboration with Emory Douglas, Tigilau Ness and Chris McBride. All of whom collaborated to pull this beautiful piece of inspirational art together.…more

Humans of the Islands

Savaii to the World | The Story of Faiesea Ah Chee

Faiesea Ah Chee is a 18-year-old Savaii girl at heart now living in the heart of Auckland city. She is a long way from her island home, so how has her journey led her here?

In 2003 Faiesea was born in Tuasivi and grew up all her life in the village of Fa’a’ala Palauli, Savaii. She was raised by a family of fishermen. Her grandfather and uncles would go out into the Moana every day. While she and her grandma would sit by their village selling the fish they had caught. There were six in her family and they would all rely on the ocean as a way of life. Faiesea went to school at Vaiola College to which she describes as “the best school”. She lived the picturesque island life; took from the ocean, gave back to the land, served her family, went to school in a neighboring village and her best friend was a turtle. 

In 2016 Faiesea’s world changed. Her family sadly lost her grandma.…more


T20 All Stars give back in Cricket Fundraiser

When you hear the name 'St Pauls College', cricket is not necessarily the first thing that comes to mind - you'd be forgiven for thinking rugby league or even Samoan stage Polyfest champs, but that could soon change with the school receiving expert coaching from former Black Caps bowler Dion Nash and their 1st X1 & colts team going unbeaten this season.

To kick off the weekend a number of old boys and cricket stars teamed up against the St Pauls 1st XI with the help of cricket legends Murphy Su'a, Dipak Patel and Mark Greatbatch in an All Stars vs St Pauls game, to fundraise towards buying cricket equipment, uniforms and extra coaching through winter.…more


Tony Fa - Inspiring the Polynesian community in West Jordan, Utah to DANCE!

Tony Fa was an overweight diabetic when his father-in-law’s stroke put the stakes in perspective.

After that stroke hospitalized his father in law, who is also diabetic, Fa had his blood sugar levels checked — and they were higher than his father in law’s. Fa’s doctor said he needed to improve his lifestyle to improve his life.

That’s when Fa found Xtreme Hip Hop, a YouTube fitness movement that combines a step, an instructor, and hip hop music. Soon, Fa was dancing — and now, he’s an instructor.

Fa’s story inspired those in the Polynesian community to dance, too — he lost more than 100 lbs., is off his diabetes medication, and he teaches multiple classes per day as a certified instructor.

Try out the basic steps in the video below and check out the full story on ABC4.Com here