October 1, 2006 is the 28th
anniversary of Tuvalu's Independence. Now is the time to purchase a Tuvaluan
flag, to celebrate and show your nationality or friendship!
Flagline.com for details and pricing
Current Flag, 1978 design re-instated April 11, 1997
Interim (and previous) Prime Minister Bikenibeu Paeniu
re-introduced the original 9-star flag in early 1997 after winning a vote of no
confidence against then Prime Minister Kamuta Latasi, who lost office. Paeniu
was subsequently re-elected the elections of 1998. He said, "Its the flag our
people wanted in the first place. The new flag was never taken to the people for
their views. This is the respect for the fathers of our nation. The flag is our
symbol, a symbol of our unity."
See Electronic Telegraph report on the
January 1996 to April 1997 Flag
The elimination of the Union Jack from the flag had been
discussed since the late 1980's. It became a short-lived reality when Prime
Minister Kamuta Latasi introduced the new flag, incorporating the coat-of-arms,
on January 1st, 1996. It was designed by Filemoni Panisi of Funafuti.
October 1, 1995 to December 1995 Flag
In early 1995, a redesigned flag was raised, with the number of
stars reduced from nine to eight. It was finally decided to adjust the flag to
be consistent with the country name. However, this flag had a very short life.
1978 to 1995 Flag
The first flag of Tuvalu was raised on Independence Day, October 1, 1978. It
was designed by Vione Natano, selected from submissions during a nationwide
contest. The original nine stars on the flag represented the nine islands in the
group, despite the name of the country meaning "8 standing together". Tuvalu was
the traditional name of the island group. The ninth island, tiny Niulakita, was
inhabited only since the 1950's, and was not part of "ancient" Tuvalu. There
were talks of naming the country Tuiva, "iva" meaning nine. These never went
very far, and the traditional name was retained. At one time it was also
proposed to have all the stars pointing straight up, but this was never
"Kamuta Latasi" animated flag. See
National Anthem for current animated flag.