Tongan king much-loved leader

Press Release – New Zealand Labour Party

Labour Leader David Shearer has today expressed his sympathy and sincere condolences to the royal family and people of Tonga on the sad occasion of the passing of King George Tupou V. “Our thoughts are with the thousands of Tongans living in New Zealand …David
SHEARER
Labour Leader
19 March 2012 MEDIA STATEMENT
Tongan king much-loved leader

Labour Leader David Shearer has today expressed his sympathy and sincere condolences to the royal family and people of Tonga on the sad occasion of the passing of King George Tupou V.

“Our thoughts are with the thousands of Tongans living in New Zealand and the Tongan people themselves who loved their king,” David Shearer said.

“Communities across the Pacific had a close affinity with the royal family of Tonga.

“King George Tupou V will be remembered for voluntarily relinquishing most of his powers three days before his coronation on 1 August 2008 in order to meet the democratic aspirations of his people.

“King Tupou was an active supporter of change. He was known for his colourful style and charming personality.

“He was held in high esteem across the Pacific. He worked tirelessly to continue the close relationship between New Zealand and Tonga.

“I am sure many will share in Tonga’s grief on this sad day,” David Shearer said.
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