Wasps centre Malakai Fekitoa has set up a fundraiser to support those affected by an “unprecedented disaster” after a volcanic eruption triggered a tsunami.
In a statement, the government confirmed three deaths: two locals and a British national.
It said some of the smaller outlying islands were particularly badly affected, with all the houses destroyed on one and just two left on another.
He wrote on the fundraiser: ‘ My name is Malakai Fekitoa, I am a rugby player born and raised in Ha’apai, Tonga and I’m living in the UK.
“On Saturday 15th of January 2022 an underwater volcano erupted causing tsunamis that affected the islands. I haven’t had the opportunity to communicate with my mother and all my family who are there.
“I am making this collection in first person cause I want to make sure that all the aid destined is received by the community. We need to send essential products, so we will send as many containers as possible from Auckland, New Zealand to Tonga.
“No matter what kind of help you want to collaborate with, all types of help are appreciate it. We will provide an address where material products can be delivered.