A leai se gagana ua pō le nu’u
Without language the people are in darkness
The Māori Party has today added their voice to the celebration of Samoan Language Week which features the theme of O le Vāfealoa’i (Strong and Respectful Relationships).
“Tangata whenua share with Samoan people the value we place on our mother tongue as a key to our cultural identity’ said Tariana Turia, Co-leader of the Māori Party.
“We know that our language shines a light on who we are – our relationships with our land, our waters, our geography, our genealogy, our past and our present. Indigenous language is an essential marker of our histories and our aspirations.
“We recognise the unique place that the Samoan language plays in the lives of Samoan people – protecting, representing and preserving their customs and practices for the grandchildren to inherit.
“The theme, O le Vāfealoa’I also recognises the special relationship that Māori share with Samoan people, as peoples of Te Moana Nui a Kiwa”.
“Strong and respectful relationships between peoples of the Pacific are also built on the basis of understanding a shared value of customs and traditions passed down from successive generations and immortalised in indigenous language”.
“We also take this moment to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Samoa Independence, and acknowledge our ongoing relationship with Samoa through the signing of the Treaty of Friendship”.
“The Māori Party is proud to celebrate the Samoan language and culture and to do what we can to support the teaching and learning of Samoan language as one of the most thriving languages currently existing in Aotearoa”.
Press Release: The Maori Party