About Us > Who We Are

Who we are

The Pacific Disability Forum works across the Pacific and this is reflected in our board and staff. Learn more about the people who work with us to improve the lives of persons with disabilities in the Pacific below.


Latoa Halatau (New Zealand)
Co-Chairperson (Male)

Latoa Halatau is the General Manager for Akamarama Advocacy Inc.

Villany Remengesau (Palau)
Co-Chairperson (Female)

Villany Remengesau is a member of the Omekasang Association of Palau.

Faatino Utumapu (Samoa)
Board Secretary

Fa'atino is the Office Manager for NOLA in Samoa

Jacquiline Garou (Papua New Guinea)

Board Member

Ms Jacqueline Garoau, is the Co Chairperson of the Papua New Guinea Assembly of Persons with Disabilities.

Richard Fournier (New Caledonia)
Board Member

Richard Fournier is the president of Collectif Handiap of New Caledonia 

Samantha French (People With Disabilites Australia Inc)
Board Member

Samantha French is the Senior Policy Officer, Employment and Accessibility for PWD Australia.

Makarita Miriama (Fiji)
Board Member

Makarita Miriama is the President of the Fiji Assocations of the Deaf 

Timote Solo (Tonga)
Board Member

Timote Solo is currently the President of Tonga National Disability Congress based in Nuku’alofa, Tonga. 



Setareki S. Macanawai
Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Macanawai is accountable for the operational management and delivery of a range of business and advisory functions in support of the strategic goals and objectives of the PDF. As one of the pioneers of the disability movement in the Pacific and one of the DPO leaders who established the Pacific Disability Forum, he was our 1st  staff member in 2006 charged with the responsibility of setting up the PDF Secretariat in Suva, Fiji in January 2007. He has lead the PDF team, and fostered the disability movement across the Pacific since then. Setareki was recognised for his contributions by the UN in 2012 with an Asia-Pacific Disability Rights Champions Award.

Katabwena Tawaka
Manager - Preparedness Emergency & Respond Unit (PERU)

Katabwena Tawaka joined PDF at the end of 2010. He brought a lot experience from his role as Program Manager for PIANGO. He managed the Progam Team for the last 7 years and is now the manager for PERU since 2018.

Raveen Chand
Manager - Finance and Corporate

Raveen manages all financial, accounting, corporate and administrative matters and leads the corporate team. He has extensive experience working with local and international NGO’s as Finance, Procurement and administration specialist. Raveen also worked in the private sector as CEO, Manager Audits and Accountant.

Laisa Vereti Qalo
Manager - Planning, Policy & Advocacy

Laisa Vereti is the Manager - Planning, Policy and Advocacy for the Pacific Disability Forum. She was previously responsible for PDF Research and was part of the UNPRPD Project where she was based at PDF as a UNV Volunteer. She previously worked as a programme coordinator for the Pacific Islands Association of NGO(PIANGO), a regional platform in the region. Prior to that she was an executive assistant/programme officer for a national NGO, the Fiji Council of Social Services (FCOSS). She also worked for the Fiji School of Medicine and Oxfam Australia’s research in Fiji.

Angeline Chand
Team Leader - Programs

Angeline has been with PDF since 2009. Her role is developing the capacity of our member PDF Disabled Peoples Organisations through training and support. She also manages the Pacific Disabled People’s Organisation Development Fund. Angeline has been recognised for her work by the Fiji Women’s Rights Movement. 

Simione Bula
Regional Coordinator - Disaster Preparedness

Simi came in in 2014 an was responsible for information and communications within PDF. He then took over the reigns as Inclusion Officer ensuring Inclusion in all areas of development and policies. Simi works closely with partners and policy makers to ensure inclusion is across the board and is inclusive of all persons with disabilities. Simi is currently the Rgional Coordinator in regards to disaste readiness in the Pacific.

Soloveni Vitoso
Public Relations & Communications Officer

Soloveni Vitoso is responsible for managing and maintaining PDF’s information, communication and technology services and for providing relevant trainings to member countries in these areas. 

Naomi Navoce
DIDRRN Programme Officer

Naomi Navoce implements and manages the approved PDF programme on disability inclusive DRR practices in the Pacific Region.

Lagesh Lal
DIDRRN Finance and Admin Assistant.

Lagesh Lal assists the Manager- Finance & Corporate with bookkeeping (general ledger & balance sheet reconciliation, payroll, petty cash, financial reports and accounts processing). He also facilitates administrative support and delivers excellent customer services for the DiDRRN Programme through Pacific Disability Forum. He also closely works with PDFs Finance & Administration Officer.

Arieta Dumaru
Executive Assistant

Arie handles all secretariat work for the Chief Executive Officer. She also supports the Chair in ensuring the smooth functioning of the Board Committee. In general, she ensures that all meetings are effectively organised and minuted; maintaining effective records and administration of the Pacific Disability Forum.

Rohit Prasad
Finance and Admin Assistant

Rohit Prasad assists the Manager - Finance & Corporate with bookkeeping (general ledger & balance sheet reconciliation, payroll, petty cash, financial reports and accounts processing). He also facilitates administrative support and delivers customer services for the Pacific Disability Forum.

Mereoni Daveta
Community Based Inclusive Development Officer

Mereoni Daveta will ensure the successful coordination, implementation, monitoring & evaluation of PDF program activities related to community based inclusive development. She will also support the work of PDF on two other initiatives; the development of an accessibility blueprint and assistive technology services in the region. Mereoni will be part of the PDF Programme Team.

Ruci Senikula
Programme Officer

Ruci is the officer responsible for our youth, Indiginoues Persons with disabilities and inclusive Bugdeting.

Rosie Catharine
Programme Officer

Rosie is responsible for disability inclusive churches and theological schools and intellectual disabilities.

Maria Miller
Programme Officer

Maria is the latest addition to our staff and is responsible for inclusive education and inclusive sports.

Telesia Kobiti
Research Officer

Telesia undertakes research activities identified and prioritised by the Pacific Disability Forum which addresses the emerging issues facing persons with disabilities within the Pacific region. Working collaboratively with the disabled peoples organisations, NGO's, regional organisations, governments, businesses, Universities, research institutions, and other key stakeholders, she will also contribute to the development of policy frameworks, advocacy strategies, and capacity building programs that will support disability inclusion in compliance with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and related disability frameworks in the region. 

Nancy Queen
Administrative Assistant

Nancy is responsible for all administrative task to support all teams in terms of travels, logistics, and accomodations. She also supports the Finance Team in terms of aquitals and general customer services

Neori Lagi
Office Assistant

Neori prepares refreshments for staff and visitors, ensures the office is in a clean and tidy state and is responsible for all driving errands as required.