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Cook Islands weatherman Ngari retires after 40 years

Monday 26 February 2024 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in National, Weather


Cook Islands weatherman Ngari retires after 40 years
Arona Ngari. Photo: LOSIRENE LACANIVALU. 20091101

Cook Islands weatherman Arona Ngari, who served as the director of the Meteorological Service for 40 years, was celebrated at a special farewell function on Thursday night.

Ngari, who began his career on February 22, 1984, expressed his satisfaction with his accomplishments during his tenure.

He joined the weather office at the age of 24, initially aiming for a career as a lab technician.

Ngari began as an observer, replacing a colleague from Rakahanga. In 1985, he spent three months on Rakahanga as a weather officer, and in 1986, he attended his first World Meteorological Organisation meeting as a member of the Tropical Cyclone Committee.

Ngari’s passion for his work grew, and he was promoted to senior officer in 1988.

He completed a Diploma in Meteorology in Fiji and New Zealand in 1989, and in 1991, he was appointed as the manager for the Cook Islands Meteorological Service.

In 1991, Ngari attended the first ever Regional Meteorological Service Directors Meeting, marking the start of his long involvement in regional meteorological affairs.

“It was the first of 14 meetings spanned over 39 years that later superseded by the Pacific Meteorological Council in 2014,” Ngari recalled.

He departed for Aitutaki on Friday with his family to celebrate his retirement, marking the end of an impactful career.

The position of director of Meteorological Services is currently advertised. The Ministry of Transport seeks a leader to manage the weather office and deliver essential weather and climate services, ensuring a safe and resilient environment for the Cook Islands.