Prime MInister 'Akilisi Pohiva. Photo/Kalino Lātū

Tonga’s Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pohiva told members of Parliament this morning he wanted them to go ahead and vote on the long delayed motion of no confidence, but his request was rejected.

The Speaker, Lord Tu’ivakano, said he would postpone it until next Monday.

However, Hon. Pohiva said he wanted to leave Monday free as the government had a duty to welcome the Queen Mother’s body on Tuesday.

The Speaker said he had the constitutional power to postpone the vote of no confidence.

Hon. Pohiva’s response to the accusations contained in the motion of no confidence was read out this morning.

The Prime Minister’s statement referred to events the government believed were successfully implemented and to the national advantage.

These included the spending on King Tupou VI’s coronation in which the government only spent TP$3.6 million compared to about TP$9 million the former government spent on late King George V’s coronation.

Local media reports described the response as clear and straight forward.

The Parliamentary Privilege Committee censored Hon. Pohiva’s response and removed some statements they thought unrelated to the claims contained in the motion of no confidence.

These included parts of paragraphs six and nine.

The introduction was also removed, but the Deputy Prime Minister asked to read it to the House because it introduced the rest of Hon. Pohiva’s response.

The Speaker allowed it to be read.

The main points

  • Tonga’s Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pohiva told members of Parliament this morning he wanted them to go ahead and vote on the long delayed motion of no confidence, but his request was rejected.
  • The Speaker, Lord Tu’ivakano, said he would postpone it until next Monday.
  • However, Hon. Pohiva said he wanted to leave Monday free as the government had a duty to welcome the Queen Mother’s body on Tuesday.
  • The Speaker said he had the constitutional power to postpone the vote of no confidence.

For more information

Date error could make No Confidence motion unlawful as the House allow PM to respond

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