Sharing stories and finding new voices: our Komiti Pasefika Fono

Attendees of the Komiti Pasefika Fono for 2021

With tapa cloths lining the floor and bright bursts of traditional Pacific colour, E tū held its biennial National Komiti Pasefika Fono over two days in February.

More than 70 Pasefika members came from around the country to hear guest speakers, participate in workshops, and discuss important issues for Pasefika members.

Delegates Maggie Grieg, Leaa Veukiso, and Ironui Feilokitohi

For Griffins’ worker and new E tū member Sago Feagaiga, it was her first Fono and “absolutely amazing”.

“It was great to be around like-minded people who are passionate and clearly in it for the right reasons – not only for ourselves but being a voice for those who are most vulnerable, marginalised, and unaware of their rights as workers.”

Sago says she became a member of E tū for her parents, who have “worked the struggle”.

Guest speakers included Mana Labour MP Barbara Edmonds, Manukau Ward Councillor Efeso Collins, and Will ‘Ilolahia from the Polynesian Panthers, alongside E tū members sharing stories of their own organising.

The evening saw members battle it out for the best fiafia performance before turning their talents to karaoke.

After much listening and discussion, Sago says members came away feeling really motivated: “We talked a lot about situations in workplaces and on the picket line – introducing it to new workers and letting them know their rights so they aren’t afraid to have a voice and use it.”

Evening entertainment

Teisa Unga gets into the workshop discussions