Port-Vila, Vanuatu – 1 February 2022: On 1 February 2022, the National University of Vanuatu handed over a donation of 100,000VT to the Vanuatu-based Tongan community in support of the Solidarity Call towards the population of Tonga.

Following the eruption of the Hunga Tonga Hunga Ha’apai underwater volcano two weeks ago, the Government of Tonga and humanitarian partners reported that the disaster affected 84% of the population directly and 85% of agricultural households.

The Vice Chancellor and President of the National University of Vanuatu, Mr. Jean-Pierre Nirua, said “The National University of Vanuatu joins the solidarity efforts led by the Vanuatu-based Tongan community and local authorities in support of the relief and recovery actions towards the people of the Kingdom of Tonga.”

Mr. Jean-Pierre Nirua added “In these difficult times, we remember the contributions of Tongans in the good teaching and training of Vanuatu citizens and students by the Tongan academic and technical communities, whose families are also affected. As we embrace the good values of resilience and solidarity, we must support each other in the Pacific”.

Vanuatu has experienced few disasters too like the Tropical Cyclone PAM in 2015 and knows from experience the emergency and the urgent need for clean and drinkable water, food rations and shutters. The donation will go to the victims in Tonga who are suffering and have destroyed homes.

The representative of the Tongan community in Port Vila, Mrs Linda KALPOI, expressed gratitude to the National University of Vanuatu. She said “The Tongan community in Port Vila is very touched by the donation and the generosity of the National University of Vanuatu. It is beautiful! Monetary donations offer the most flexible way of providing support to our community back home.”

Mr. Jean-Pierre Nirua, concluded: “The National University of Vanuatu sympathises with the people and learning institutions of Tonga in these difficult times. We express our condolences to the families who lost their loved ones. Our thoughts are with our Tongan brothers and sisters in these challenging times”.