New Tongan passports arrive as 200 passports remain unaccounted for

    A shipment of new Tongan passports has arrived, a spokesperson for the Prime Minister’s
    Office has confirmed to Kaniva News yesterday.

    Meanwhile, Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pōhiva said 200 Tongan passports from the original stock
    of documents were unaccounted for.

    He said an investigation was underway to find out what had happened to the missing
    passports.

    He said the investigation had been delayed by the recent snap election and preparations to
    form the next government.

    It is understood the passports disappeared before the passport stock ran out in August.

    As Kaniva News reported in August, the Tongan government ran out of passports.

    A spokesperson for Tonga’s Department of Foreign Affairs said the shortage was due to high local demand and from Tongans living overseas.

    The replacement passports were originally due in October.

    Task force

    Hon. Pōhiva revealed that a task force had been set up to investigate the disappearance of the passports.

    He said he had been told the investigation was almost complete.

    This task force was different from the task force established by the government and operated by Tongan Police, to investigate Tongan passport scandals.

    “The problem now is that we have to focus on the election of the Prime Minister and
    forming of the new government,” Hon. Pōhiva said.

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