Isaia Italeli

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Isaia Italeli Taeia
Minister for Works and Natural Resources
In office
24 December 2010 – 20 July 2011
Prime Minister Willy Telavi
Preceded by Vete Sakaio
Succeeded by Willy Telavi[1]
Speaker of the Parliament of Tuvalu
In office
29 September 2010 – 24 December 2010
Prime Minister Maatia Toafa
Preceded by Kamuta Latasi
Succeeded by Kamuta Latasi
Member of the Tuvaluan Parliament
for Nui
In office
16 September 2010 – 20 July 2011
Preceded by Iakoba Italeli
Succeeded by Pelenike Isaia
Personal details
Died 20 July 2011
Apia, Samoa
Political party Independent

Isaia Italeli Taeia (1960s – 19/20 July 2011), more commonly known as Isaia Italeli, was a Tuvaluan politician.

He was elected to Parliament as MP for Nui in the September 2010 general election, at which time his elder brother, Sir Iakoba Italeli Taeia, was serving as Governor-General.[2][3]

On 29 September 2010, he was elected Speaker of Parliament.[4] He joined the Opposition to Prime Minister Maatia Toafa's government in December 2010, along with a backbencher and Home Affairs Minister Willy Telavi, enabling the latter to oust Toafa in a motion of no confidence, and replace him. As Prime Minister, Telavi appointed Italeli Minister for Works and Natural Resources.[5][6]


He was found dead in his room at the Hotel Elisa in the Samoan capital, Apia, on 20 July 2011.[7] He was in Samoa to attend a Pacific Forum Fisheries Ministers' Meeting. The Samoan police stated that, although the death was sudden, and Italeli was only in his 40s, the death was "likely" to be of natural causes.[8] He was buried on Nui on 25 July 2011 following a state funeral.[7]

His widow, Pelenike Isaia, succeeded him to Parliament in the resulting by-election the following month, stating she would continue his work, and thus becoming only the second woman ever to sit in the Tuvaluan Parliament.[9][10]


  1. ^ Italeli's widow Pelenike Isaia was appointed to Cabinet in his place, but as Minister for Home Affairs. The Works and Natural Resources portfolio was then taken on by the incumbent prime minister.
  2. ^ Cannon, Brian (16 September 2010). "Tuvalu Election Results". Tuvalu News. Retrieved 2010-09-17. 
  3. ^ "Meetings can be held, but…", Islands Business
  4. ^ "Palamene o Tuvalu (Parliament of Tuvalu)". Inter-Parliamentary Union. 2010. Retrieved 7 March 2013. 
  5. ^ "Meetings can be held, but…", Islands Business
  6. ^ Tuvalu: Cabinet Archived 28 May 2010 at the Wayback Machine., Central Intelligence Agency
  7. ^ a b "State Funeral for the Minister of Natural Resources, Hon Isaia Taeia Italeli" (PDF). Tuvalu Philatelic Bureau Newsletter (TPB: 01/2011). 25 July 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2012. 
  8. ^ "Samoa police rule out foul play in death of Tuvalu minister". Radio New Zealand International. 21 July 2011. Retrieved 5 October 2011. 
  9. ^ "Tuvalu Government set to retain power", Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 24 August 2011
  10. ^ "Women Need Support to Overcome Barriers Entering Parliament", Solomon Times, 11 May 2010