As if the marches in the morning were not spectacular enough, official guests for the 55th Independence Day celebration on Thursday received a further treat in the afternoon.
The second part of the celebration brought out the best of Samoa in terms of dances, singing and a feature of such celebrations, the marching girls.
In front of the government building, His Highness Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi sat and applauded all the performances.
First up were the colourful marches by three marching girls groups. They came from Tanugamanono Primary School, Vaimoso Primary School and Vaiusu Primary School.
The young ones provided an impressive show of togetherness with lots of energy as they thoroughly entertained the crowd.
Don Bosco’s reputation to thrill and entertain is well known and they did not disappoint with yet another masterpiece during their siva.
They were followed by Wesley College and Maluafou College who also presented siva performances.
The lone representative group from Savaii came from Taga who presented a pese.
Last but not the least was the final pese presented by the village of Apia. This brought the curtains down on the celebration and drew most of the guests to the dance floor during the taualuga.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi expressed his gratitude to all the groups. He was joined by the Head of Tokelau, Siopili Perez, Governor of American Samoa, Lolo Matalasi Moliga and the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Leuluaialiiotumua Bill English.
In the independence programme, Tuilaepa acknowledged the hand of God over Samoa.
“To God be the glory for the great things He has done for Samoa. We expressly acknowledge that without His divine leadership and spiritual intervention, Samoa would have never survived the torrents of global developmental challenges as a sovereign nation,” he said.
“As we celebrate 55 years of our independence, we pause to remember the sacrifices and wisdom of our forebears in their vision and foresight.”