Fr Samuel Ata, former Chairman of the Solomon Islands Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Photo credit: SIBC.

Fr Samuel Ata, former Chairman of the Solomon Islands Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Photo credit: SIBC.

Relatives, friends and work colleagues turned out in numbers to pay final respects to Reverend Sam Ata during a funeral service held at the Anglican St Barnabas Cathedral in Honiara.

At the funeral service, Director for Peace and Reconciliation Reuben Lilo says Reverend Ata has left an inspiring legacy with his leadership of the Truth and Reconciliation and Solomon Islands owes him a lot.

“Other former Commissioners of the TRC would agree with me that the government and the people of Solomon Islands owe a lot to the late Father Sam Ata, who left a legacy in this country, for his wisdom, understanding, tireless effort and invaluable contributions towards the establishment and the tenure of TRC under his leadership in ensuring that the work entrusted to him and members of the TRC was completed in the time given.”

Speaking also at the funeral service, Father Addison Saefoa said during his sermon that the Reverend Ata was a unique gift to his family, the sporting community, the Church of Melanesia and the wider community in the country.

“The late Sam Ata is a unique gift first of all to his family, and then to the sporting fraternity, and then to the Church of Melanesia, and to the nation of Solomon Islands and also has contributed to the academia. He strived for excellence in all the various areas of responsibility that come his way.”

The late Reverend Ata passed away in Honiara on Thursday night last week after a period of illness.

He was buried in the St Barnabas Cathedral compound yesterday afternoon and is survived by his wife, three daughters and a newborn son.

Meanwhile, former Truth and Reconciliation Commissioners also acknowledged the late Reverend for his leadership and tenure as the Head of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

“He was one of the most highly educated Solomon Islander with humility. He was simple and down to earth in his dealing with people.”

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