Nahega Molifai Silimaka
Birth: 14 April 1908
Niue island
Death: 9 May 2008
New Zealand
Age: 100 years, 25 days
Country: NiueNIUNew ZealandNZL
Centenarian

Lady Nahega Molifai Silimaka (14 April 1908 – 9 May 2008), affectionately known as the "Lady of Tatafa", "Nana Moli", or "Nana Silimaka", was a centenarian matriarch of Niue. She was attributed to be a founding member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) in her village of Liku.

Biography

Nahega Molifai Silimaka was born in Niue island on 14 April 1908. Born into a Christian-influenced society, Silimaka was baptised a member of the Presbyterian Church of Niue (PIC) upon her birth in 1908. She continued to attend the PIC until her meetings with missionaries from the LDS Church in 1960. She was known to be one of the founding members of the LDS Church in her village of Liku, assisting to fund-raise and hand build their first small brick chapel in the centre of Liku in the late 1960s. Silimaka was known for her community service in Niue, and when she moved to New Zealand in the 1970s, she continued her work. Her service involved Women and Family Affairs and a large involvement in musical groups, especially Niuean church choirs. "Lady Silimaka was known for the symbol of the turtle, sacred to Niue and the Pacific. During her later years of life, the turtle became a represented symbol of the Silimaka family."

On 14 April 2008, Silimaka celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded with family at her Otara residence in Auckland. A few weeks later on the ANZAC Day weekend, she was able to "celebrate her birthday once more, with a multitude of guests numbering to 500 people at the LDS Church, Dawson Road". The celebration was marked with Niuean cultural groups, Samoan dances as well as many accolades being offered to her[1]. Silimaka died in New Zealand in her Auckland home on 9 May 2008 at the age of 100 years and 25 days from causes incident to age[2]. Silimaka had 34 grandchildren, 78 great-grandchildren and 14 great great-grandchildren prior to her death. She was buried at the Mangere Lawn Cemetery next to her husband, Silimaka Ikinehau, who died in July 1979. Silimaka is currently oldest known woman ever from Niue.

References

  1. Tauranga, David (2008). "100 Year old Gran has been a great-great women", Manukau Courier, p.1.
  2. OUR NANA - NANA SILIMAKA
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