Dr Sione Tapa dies Wednesday 9 at the age of 94.
The former Minister of Health was appointed to the ministerial posit in 1970 and he held it until he retired in 1996.
Dr Tapa established Tonga Health Dr Tapa Scholarship for students of health promotion and education.
In 2012 he was recognised by the Pacific region’s health community for his contribution to health. WHO Regional Director for the Western Pacific awarded Dr Tapa with plaques of appreciation.
It said the plaques honoured him as a dedicated public health servant, colleague and true friend of WHO.
“For 26 years, Dr Tapa provided strong leadership as Tonga’s delegate to the Regional Committee for the Western Pacific. Although currently retired and living in Tonga, he has been the longest-serving delegate to the Regional Committee.”
Dr Tapa is survived by his wife Sala Puloka Tapa.