Independence programme opens at Mulivai, closes at Mulinu'u

The Ministry of Prime Minister and Cabinet (M.P.M.C.) has announced the programme for this Saturday’s Independence Day events. 

It will start with a thanksgiving service on Friday evening, and wrap up with the lowering of the Samoan flag on Saturday afternoon.

The Friday evening service will be led by Reverend Elder Tautiaga Senara at Mulivai Cathedral. 

On Saturday, schools, organisations and government officers will gather in Mulinuu at 4am to await the arrival of the special guests, and the Head of State His Highness Tuimalealiifano Vaaletoa Sualauvi II, who should arrive by 6am.

The flag will be raised at the Malae o Tiafau at Mulinuu, and a short service will be led by Reverend Mauga Motu, Secretary of the Council of Churches in Samoa, before the parade will set off.

Dance performances will be held from 11am, and the entire day’s proceedings will finish at 3:30.

M.P.M.C. Chief Executive Officer Agafili Shem Leo said the programme is as exciting as ever. 

“This is a highlight on our calendar of events. The children from all the schools, organisations, companies, even government ministries, come in unity for the parade and that has been over the last 57 years. 

“We have maintained that as one of the very exciting parts of the program for our celebrations.”

He highlighted the traditional performances for the day, to be performed by the villages of Salailua from Savaii, and Lotofaga, Toamua and Satapuala from Upolu.

Other entertainments will be from Vaimea, Aleisa, Vaimoso, Vaitele, Lepea, and Aele primary schools.

“You know, the feeling of nationalism in these events and the history behind it, and the lessons for the new generations, the young children to appreciate what independence means to them, to this country, to them as future leaders of this country. It’s very crucial,” Agafili said.

“We all once marched in our school days and we always recall it, waking up early in the morning and looking forward to go and join your other school mates, to wave at the guests and leaders on the grand stand.”

Everyone has had to register to take part in the Independence Day event, Agafili said and it closes on Friday. People can still register from the M.P.M.C., Ministry of Women, Community and Social Development or Ministry of Education and simply need to provide a reason for wanting to take part, and the details of the participants.

There is no fee but the registration was used to create a useful order to the parade.

The parade will lead with people with disabilities and primary schools, and then colleges, organisations, non-profit organisations, village organisations and then finally the government. 

Police will be on duty to look after people, but parents, teachers and principals are urged to look after their children’s safety, Agafili added.

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