Falefa

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Meeting at Falefa circa 1923 - 1928. At the center rear is New Zealander Major General George S. Richardson, Administrator of Samoa between 1923-1928.

Falefa is a large village on the north east coast of Upolu island in Samoa.[1] The village is part of the electoral constituency (Faipule District) Anoamaa East which is within the larger political district of Atua. Atua is headed by the 'Tui Atua' (King of Atua), an honorific title bestowed by the village of Lufilufi and which is currently held by Samoa's Head of State, Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi.

Geographically, Falefa is one of the oldest and largest villages in Samoa, at one point stretching from its ancient border with Uafato to Saoluafata, until portions of these lands were gifted by its rulers to form the settlements of Falevao, Lufilufi, Falepuna, Lalomauga, Sauano & Saletele in later centuries.

Falefa means the 'Four Houses', indicative of the four sub-villages which make up the village itself; Sagogu, Gagaemalae, Saleapaga, Sagapolu. Each of these sub villages comprise families, the heads of which, represent their extended families and their respective area at Falefa's Village Council, headed by the two senior tulafale-alii of the village, Moeono & Iuli.

Falefa was founded by the two sons of Tui Atua - Moe'ono'ono Faleologa (or Moe'ono) & his younger brother Leutele Leutogitui in the 9th century A.D. Leaving their birthplace at Uafato (Fagaloa) and obeying their fathers wishes, they established their own settlement at the northern edge of the Falefa valley. The elder of the two brothers, Moeono, was given the mantle of being 'Tui Atua o le laueleele' (meaning authority over all lands and people) while his younger brother Leutele was designated the mantle of 'Tui Atua Faanofonofo ma le Saoga,' (meaning to give his best as heir and steward). The size of Falefa was such that a centralised location was needed to rule from and so Moeono created 'O le Faleupolu o Sagapolu' - the administrative centre from which the seat of Moeono and his successors continue to govern Falefa. Other sub-villages followed; Saleapaga followed by Sagogu and Gagaeimalae. Moeono bestowed titles on prominent houses and established 'vassal' houses to serve Moeono and Leutele.

The 7 sub villages (Fale Fitu) make up of Four Sub Villages and three they inherited from their father, Tui Atua. The brothers traveled extensively around their dominion - from Lemafatele to Sasoa'a, to Fagaloa and the mountains overlooking the valley below where the village of Falefa stands today.

In Ancient times, Falefa was given the honour of being the seat of the King, Tupu Tafa'ifa Fonoti, to whom he gave it the title, 'Aai o Fonoti' - King Fonoti's City, in recognition of the bravery of its warriors who were instrumental in his victory over the forces of Va'afusuaga Tole'afoa and Samala'ulu. During the 18th century, wars between the Falefa and surrounding districts had taken its toll. Iuli was rewarded by Moeono for having the courage to speak for peace and was subsequently granted the position of honour as one of the pre-eminent senior tulafale of Falefa, assisting Moeonoono and his younger brother Leutele in any events in Samoa.

FAALUPEGA O FALEFA

Tulouna a le aai o Fonoti ma fale e fagafua

a oulua matua: Iuli ma Moe’ono

a Fulumu’a na falelimaa’I fetalaiga ia te oe le Aai

Tulouna a le putuputu o tagata o le Tuiatua

Afio mai sa Fenunuivao

mai Leutele o le tina o Tupua

mai Lealaisalanoa o le tei o Tupua o le tama a Malili e fa

Mai Alai’asa na fita I tuga

mai Luafalemana o le Aloalii

The population is 1,387 (2006 Census).[2]

South of the village settlement is Falefa Valley.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Samoa Territorial Constituencies Act 1963". Pacific Islands Legal Information Institute. Archived from the original on 5 June 2011. Retrieved 18 December 2009. 
  2. ^ "Population and Housing Census Report 2006" (PDF). Samoa Bureau of Statistics. July 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 16 December 2009. 

Coordinates: 13°53′S 171°33′W / 13.883°S 171.550°W / -13.883; -171.550