September 09, 2021
Tongan reo a stretch for Māori MP
Malo e lelei.
It’s Tongan Language Week, and Green MP Teanau Tuiono is encouraging Māori to explore their whakapapa connections and try a few words.
He says he’s been hearing Tongan spoken his whole life.
“One of the questions I get asked quite a lot is whether I am Tongan? Because Tuiono is also a Tongan name. We used to get phone calls and people would start speaking Tongan and we’d say “we’re the Aituan Tuionos, the Tongan Tuionos are the next one in the phone book,” Mr Tuiono says.