Tonga parliament building flattened by Cyclone Gita

A damaged building at the Parliament House in Tonga's capital of Nuku"alofa after Cyclone Gita hit the country.Image copyright
AFP

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Tonga’s Parliament House can be more than 100 years old

The parliament building inside the Pacific country of Tonga has been destroyed by the worst storm to hit the country in more than 60 years.

Cyclone Gita, a category four storm, battered the island overnight as well as also caused widespread damage.

Electricity lines were downed as well as also roofs were torn off houses by the high winds.

The government declared a state of emergency before the storm hit, as well as also set up evacuation centres where thousands of people stayed overnight.

“The wind was terrifying. which was roaring overhead. We could hear roofs being lifted,” witness Mary Fonua told Radio brand new Zealand.

“I could see the people across the road, their roof was flapping around the house, which was trying to disintegrate. I think a lot of people were very desperate last night.”

The UK Met Office said the storm – which brought winds of more than 200km/h (124mph) – was the strongest to hit the main islands of Tonga since modern records began.

Tonga can be made up of more than 170 islands, as well as also can be located inside the Pacific Ocean east of Fiji as well as also north of brand new Zealand.

Tonga’s parliament building can be more than 100 years old. which can be not yet clear where MPs will sit while which can be being repaired.

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John Pulu/AFP

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The storm tore the roofs off buildings as well as also uprooted trees

One MP, Lord Fusitu’a, told ABC News which the damage was “a great disappointment”.

“Successive legislatures over time have suggested building a brand new parliament house as well as also I guess which’ll be a necessity today,” he said.

Tongan cross-country skiier Pita Taufatofua, who can be known as the bare-chested flag bearer for the Tongan Olympic team, posted about the cyclone on his social media.

“Thank you for all the kind messages of support,” Taufatofua said on his Facebook account Tuesday.

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AFP/getty

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The 34-year-old athlete gained international notoriety at the 2016 as well as also 2018 opening ceremonies

“Tonga has been hit very hard by Cyclone Gita resulting in a lot of damage. Still yet to hear word on the safety of family as well as also friends along with the full scale of destruction.

“Things like This kind of truly put life as well as also what’s important in life into perspective. I wish I could be there right today to help #prayersForTonga,” the post said.

Gita can be required to intensify into a category all 5 storm – the highest level – on Tuesday as which moves towards Fiji.

however experts predict which will miss the country’s most densely populated areas.

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