Tonga

Digicel working round the clock to establish international communication with Tonga

Our domestic network in Tongatapu is active and we are working to restore international connectivity. Digicel’s engineers and the technical team are working on the issues and hope to have them resolved in the shortest time possible.

Tonga tsunami: Communications 'may be down for two weeks'

Some of the islands' communications and power have now been restored, but the internet may be out for a while longer because of damage to an undersea cable.

After the eruption, Tonga's main island was blanketed in ash and its western coastline is said to be devastated.

"We're getting sketchy information, but it looks like the cable has been cut," the Southern Cross Cable Network's networks director Dean Veverka told the AFP news agency.

PIF reaches out to Tonga following devastation by volcano and tsunami

Puna said like the rest of the Forum family, he is shocked by the volcanic eruptions in Tonga.

“Even from the relative safety of Suva, we could feel and hear the eruptions which rocked the Kingdom and large parts of the region to its core.”

Puna said he is anxious about the safety and welfare of the people of Tonga and pledge the resources of the Pacific Islands Forum to Tonga.

He will try and speak with the Prime Minister once communications have been restored.

Digicel working to restore its international connectivity affected by volcanic eruption in Hunga Ha'apai Island in Tonga

A tsunami has hit Tonga’s largest island Tongatapu, as a result, Digicel customers in the Kingdom of Tonga have experienced disruption in their mobile service. Digicel’s domestic mobile towers are in operation across Tongatapu.

New tsunami warning as waves hit Tonga

A tsunami wave struck Tongatapu after locals were urged to seek higher ground.

It came shortly after locals in Tongatapu reported “deafening” sound of an eruption this afternoon. They also reported stones pouring down in Tongatapu.

No injuries or deaths have been reported.

Kaniva News correspondent in Tonga Patimiosi Ngūngūtau shared a photo of sea waves flowing inland.

He described the deafening sound as “weird”.

“It was a rain of small black stones and black ashes”, he said.

He said they have evacuated to Liahona at the central south.

Match schedule set for FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ OFC preliminary competition

The tournament will determine which nation will represent Oceania in the FIFA intercontinental play-off in June 2022, from which the winner earns a spot at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ finals.  

A standalone match between the two lowest-ranked OFC nations, Tonga and the Cook Islands, will be held on March 13 to determine who qualifies through to join Group A and contest the preliminary competition. 

Group A, which will be made up of the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Tahiti and the qualifying match winner, will have its first Match Day on March 17. 

Pandemic presents big challenges for Pacific seasonal workers

New Zealand has a new one-way travel bubble with Pacific island countries such as Samoa, Vanuatu and Tonga.

Vaccinated RSE workers from these countries can come to New Zealand without self-isolating or taking Covid-19 tests on arrival, after the one-way quarantine-free travel took effect last week.

Up to 5,000 workers are needed across the horticulture and viticulture industries during peak summer season in December and January.

The usual supply of backpackers to New Zealand's recognised seasonal workers scheme remains cut off due to Covid-19 border restrictions.

Calls for a crackdown on labour hire companies 'poaching' Pacific workers

In the last 18 months, around 12,000 workers have come into Australia from countries such as Vanuatu and Samoa.

But how many have stayed in the jobs, they were contracted to do?

ABC Rural has been told more than 1,000 of these workers have absconded, with many poached by labour hire companies that are not licensed to do so.

What's going wrong?

Speaking to RN, Richard Shannon from Growcom said across Australia, farmers were reporting seasonal workers suddenly leaving their jobs.

Farrell tests positive for Covid

The RFU said Farrell would miss Saturday's training after returning a positive PCR test and would remain in isolation and would be lateral flow and PCR tested again on Saturday. All other player and staff PCR test results received were negative.

Farrell had been due to start at flyhalf but his likely absence means a probable start for Marcus Smith, who was named among the replacements after missing parts of training this week with a leg injury.

Bookings trickle in for quarantine-free flights from Samoa, Tonga, Tokelau, Vanuatu

One-way travel with low-risk Pacific countries resumes on November 8 from the three islands and Tokelau, Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced last week.

Travellers from those nations will be able to bypass spending 14 days at a managed isolation and quarantine facility.

All travellers, New Zealand citizens, and NZ resident or visa critical purpose visa holders, would need to have stayed 14 days in their countries before departure and aren’t required to provide a pre-departure test.

They must be fully vaccinated, unless they are New Zealand citizens.