Cook Island Voyaging Canoe “Paikea” Arrives in Time to Celebrate Samoa’s Independence

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Wednesday 31 May 2023, Apia Samoa. Cook Islands Voyaging canoe “Paikea” departed Rarotonga on 22nd May, and arrived safely into Apia port on Tuesday night at 8pm.
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The Samoa Voyaging Society Aiga Folau o Samoa (SVS Aiga Folau) have announced the arrival of their voyaging Aiga from the Cook Islands in a press statement issued this morning.
“The Te Puna Marama Voyaging Foundation’s traditional voyaging canoe “Paikea” has arrived in time,  for Samoa’s closing commemoration, of a year long 60th Anniversary, unintentionally fulfilling Government of Samoa’s message e “Folau ma le Faatuatua“.
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⁶The Samoa Voyaging Society, Aiga Folau o Samoa have certainly delivered to Samoa the “Folau ma le Faatuatua” –  “voyage with faith” through the arrival of the Paikea from the Cook Islands.”
The “Paikea” voyaging canoe is in Samoa to support the SVS Aiga Folau in delivering the NZ MFAT funded, Manaaki Guardians 2023 campaign in Savai’i. This is an environmental educational program, led by Conservation International, in a multi-sector partnership with various Ministries.
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Skippering the Paikea is one of the Cook Islands’ most experienced Master navigator, Peia Patai.

He has a crew of nine, including Aiga Folau o Samoa’s Skipper for the Gaualofa,  Karl (Kalolo) Steffany, and a senior voyager, Lilimailagi Maoaluma Onesemo, of Malaemalu, Falealili and Matautu, Apia.

A mixed crew of ten in total are from the Cook Islands, Samoa and Hawaii have been voyaging at sea for the last seven days, using the ancestral traditional navigation knowledge.

The Samoa Voyaging Society will be hosting an official welcome this morning, at 10am, at SIGFA clubhouse, Matautu.

SVS Aiga Folau acknowledges the support of its key partners; MFAT New Zealand, Conservation International, and Te Puna Marama Voyaging Foundation, Cook Islands.

SVS Aiga Folau also acknowledges the support and assistance of the Government of Samoa via the professional work of their officials in Immigration, Customs, Health, Quarantine and Agriculture, with Transam Samoa, and SIGFA enabling a smooth prompt welcome for their Cook Islands voyaging family.