Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific

Model farmer from the Pacific honoured at the Asia-Pacific World Food Day celebration

Niue, 18 Oct 2004 -- Bangkok – Today, the FAO Regional Office in Bangkok has issued awards to five outstanding farmers from the Asia-Pacific Region. The farmers received the awards from HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn during the 2004 World Food Day celebration in Bangkok.

Below please find the citation used during the ceremony to highlight the achievements of the farmer from the Pacific island of Niue.

Uhotau Pasisi – fisher, Niue

Uhotau Pasisi, a 64 year old fisherman from the idyllic island of Niue in the South Pacific, has always been a man who stands tall.

For the past 45 years, this father of three and grandfather of six, has set out in his fishing boat four to six hours a day, returning home with about 20 kilograms of a large variety of marine fish. Most of the catch goes to feed his family and friends. Anything that’s left over he sells as surplus, allowing him to reel in about 2 000 New Zealand dollars every month.

For Uhotau Pasisi, fishing is more than an occupation. It is a way of life. In 1994, he was elected President of the National Fishing Association. As president he shares ideas with his colleagues on how to preserve and improve their livelihoods, as well as encouraging young men and women to fish as a means to support their families, communities and preserve an important part of their culture and lifestyle.

His commitment to improving the status of the Niuean people has been a central part of his life and career. Based in the capital Alofi, he has been constantly active in public service. For the past 12 years he has worked as a Public Service Commissioner, a post he still holds today. He also served as a Justice of the Peace, presiding over ceremonies and celebrations for his neighbors and adjudicating disputes to help maintain harmony in his community. As a result, FAO is awarding Uhotai Pasisi for outstanding achievement as a Pacific fisher.

RAP 04/35D

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