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Gov-Gen to present Badge of the General Fono of Tokelau

4 October 2013
Media release – Government House

Governor-General to present Badge of the General Fono of Tokelau

The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, will present the Badge of the General Fono of Tokelau to the Ulu-o-Tokelau, Aliki Faipule Salesio Lui, at a ceremony at Government House Wellington on Monday 7 October at 3pm.

The Badge, approved by the College of Arms in London and HM The Queen of New Zealand, depicts the national symbol of Tokelau, the Tuluma (a uniquely Tokelauan carved wooden fisherman’s tackle box) and the Royal Crown.   The white cross in the centre of the Tuluma and the inscription “Tokelau mo te Atua” (Tokelau for God) emphasise the importance of Christianity in everyday life in Tokelau. 

The Governor-General, who visited Tokelau last year, said the approval of the Badge by the Queen of New Zealand emphasised the enduring ties between Tokelau and New Zealand and the mana of the General Fono.

“New Zealand and Tokelau are part of the Realm of New Zealand which entails a special relationship.  We are joined like members of a family through a Pacific heritage and the common citizenship we share.  Tokelauans are an important part of our wider New Zealand family and have enriched our cultural and ethnic diversity and contributed much to our society, culture and economy.”

Background information:
A “badge” is a distinctive heraldic emblem issued by the College of  Arms in London, which is the heraldic authority for the United Kingdom and much of the Commonwealth including New Zealand.  The College also authorises new coats of arms.  More information about the College can be found here: http://www.college-of-arms.gov.uk/

The formal heraldic description of the Badge of the General Fono of Tokelau is: “A representation of a Tuluma or carved wooden Fishing Tackle Box proper  charged with ten Lozenges conjoined in cross six palewise in pale and four fesswise in fess Argent the whole ensigned by a Royal Crown proper. Below on a scroll “Tokelau mo te Atua.””  [Proper = in natural colours; Argent = silver but normally shown as white]

The Ulu-o-Tokelau is the titular head of Tokelau’s government and chairs the Council for the Ongoing Government of Tokelau.  More information about Tokelau’s Government can be found here:  http://www.mfat.govt.nz/Countries/Pacific/Tokelau.php#political

ENDS

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