Boerma Award celebrated at Sails

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Minister of Health Tuitama Dr. Tuitama, N.Z. High Commissioner David Nicholson, China’s Ambassador Wang Xuefeng, Deputy P.M. Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, Mata’afa Keni Lesa, Eriko Hibi, UN Resident Coordinator Lizbeth Cullity and Japan’s Ambassador Shinya Aoki.

Minister of Health Tuitama Dr. Tuitama, N.Z. High Commissioner David Nicholson, China’s Ambassador Wang Xuefeng, Deputy P.M. Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, Mata’afa Keni Lesa, Eriko Hibi, UN Resident Coordinator Lizbeth Cullity and Japan’s Ambassador Shinya Aoki.

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (F.A.O) of the United Nations hosted a cocktail at Sails Restaurant on Wednesday evening.

The occasion was the celebration of Samoa winning the F.A.O 2016-2017 A.H. Boerma Award through the Editor of the Samoa Observer, Mata’afa Keni Lesa.

The award recognises Mata’afa’s work to address food security and agriculture challenges faced by Small Island Developing States. 

It also honours “his strong ability as an Editor to communicate complicated issues through an accessible writing style has successfully captured the attention of the general public.”

F.A.O’s Coordinator Eriko Hibi and Mata’afa Keni Lesa
F.A.O’s Coordinator Eriko Hibi and Mata’afa Keni Lesa

This is the first time anyone from the Pacific – including New Zealand and Australia – has won the award. Previous winners include the New York Times, The Guardian, BBC, CNN,  Wall Street Journal and others. 

The informal gathering was hosted by the Sub-regional Coordinator for the Pacific Islands, Eriko Hibi.

In attendance was the Deputy Prime Minister, Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, Cabinet Ministers and members of the diplomatic corps and guests.  

© Samoa Observer 2016

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