Former Member of Parliament for Mutalau Hafe Vilitama MNZOM who passed away at the age of 90 was laid to rest on Wednesday October 2nd at Mutalau.
The State funeral for Hon. Hafe Vilitama MNZOM was held at the Mutalau Ekalesia Church Fupiu Talamitaki.
The church service was conducted by his grandson Reverend Dr. Matagi Vilitama with the village Pastor and Vice President of the Ekalesia Niue Reverend Nuka Tauevihi.
The church overflowed with mourners attending the service to pay their last respects to the Tupuna.
The eulogy was delivered by his granddaughter and current member of parliament for Mutalau Hon. Maureen Melekitama.
Hafe Vilitama started his career as an educator as a 14 year old teacher aid for the school of Kofekofe.
He later went on to become the deputy principal of the school. In 1966 he became the Head master of Lialagi primary school in Lakepa and he was also Acting Principal for Matalave primary school at Tuapa in 1972.
He was Niue’s first local Niuean Director for the Department of Education in 1978 until early retirement at the age of 55 in 1985.
Hafe Vilitama served 39 years in the Education Sector and the Education Department recognized this by closing the two schools on the day of the funeral.
He was also the Ulumotua or head deacon of the Ekalesia of Mutalau for many many years.
Acting Premier Hon. Billy Talagi representing the Niue government presented the Niue flag in recognition of Hafe Vilitama’s 12 years in the Niue Legislative Assembly as the Member for Mutalau. He served 4 terms from 1987 to 1999.
He was awarded the Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2013.
He is survived by his beloved wife Mrs Ettie Vilitama, his children, grandchildren and many great-grandchildren.