|The Right Honourable
Sir Toaripi Lauti
|3rd Governor-General of Tuvalu|
1 October 1990 – 1 December 1993
|Prime Minister||Bikenibeu Paeniu|
|Preceded by||Tupua Leupena|
|Succeeded by||Tomu Sione|
|1st Prime Minister of Tuvalu|
1 October 1978 – 8 September 1981
|Governor-General||Fiatau Penitala Teo|
|Preceded by||Position Established|
|Succeeded by||Tomasi Puapua|
|1st Chief Minister of the Ellice Islands|
2 October 1975 – 1 October 1978
|Preceded by||Position Established|
|Succeeded by||Position Abolished|
|Born||28 November 1928
Gilbert and Ellice Islands
|Died||25 May 2014
Sir Toaripi Lauti GCMG PC (28 November 1928 – 25 May 2014) was a Tuvaluan politician who served as chief minister of the Colony of Tuvalu (1975–78), as the first prime minister following Tuvalu's independence (1978-1981) and governor-general of Tuvalu (1990-1993). He was married to Sualua Tui.
Lauti was born in Toaripi Village of Papua New Guinea. His father was Pastor Lauti of Funafuti. He studied at Elisefou (New Ellice) primary school in Vaitupu for 6 years from 1938 to 1944. In 1945 he was sent to study in Fiji at the Londoni Provincial School and in 1946 at the Queen Victoria School, before moving in 1947 to Wesley College in Auckland, New Zealand. From 1948 to 1951 he finished his schooling at St Andrews College in Christchurch 1948. He attended the Teachers' Training College in Christchurch in 1952 and 1953, at the same time he was a House Master at St Andrew's College.
Toaripi Lauti was a teacher at King George V Secondary School in Tarawa from 1954 to 1962. From 1962 to 1974 he was an industrial relations officer with the British Phosphate Commissioners in Nauru. In 1974 he entered politics and because a member of parliament for the constituency of Funafuti.
Prime Minister of Tuvalu, post-independence
The first elections after independence will not held until 8 September 1981. At that election Dr. Tomasi Puapua, was elected as prime minister with a 7:5 majority over the group a members of parliament headed by Toaripi Lauti. The administration of Toaripi Lauti had become involved in controversy, as a result of his decision to invest nearly all of the government's money with an American real estate salesman who promised 15 percent returns from the purchase of land in Texas. The investment turned out to be a fraud. While the funds were recovered by US agencies, the controversy resulted in a loss of confidence in his judgment and was an important factor in the election of Dr. Tomasi Puapua.
Toaripi Lauti also served as the President of the Funafuti Town Council and as a member of the Tuvalu Language Board.
Governor-General of Tuvalu
His reputation was redeemed from the circumstances that ended his time as prime minister, he was the Governor-General of Tuvalu, representing the monarch as head of state, from 1 October 1990 through 1 December 1993. In 1990 he was appointed a Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George (GCMG).
|Prime Minister of Tuvalu
Sir Tupua Leupena
|Governor-General of Tuvalu
Sir Tomu Sione
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- Craig, Robert D. (2010). Historical Dictionary of Polynesia. Scarecrow Press.