Piveni Piukala (L), PM Pōhiva Tu'i'onetoa

Sacked chair of the Shared Communication Boards Piveni Piukala said the Prime Minister had not provided enough evidence to justify his recommendation to suspend three TBC staff members.

The Tongan Broadcasting Commission has cited a letter of termination sent to Piukala in which his refusal to suspend the three officers was given as a reason for his sacking.

TBC said the grounds for the termination in the termination letter were incompetence, failure to assist the Public Enterprises to act according to its principal objective and acting in bad faith.

The  Broadcaster said the termination followed Piukala’s decision to decline to the PM order to suspend three staff members and investigate them for alleged misconduct.

The staff members are two news reporters Salamo Fulivai, Vilisoni Tu’inia and the Station Manager Setita Tu’i’onetoa.

Piukala said if sufficient evidence had been provided he would have sacked the staff members straight away.

The Prime Minister claimed that Piukala’s actions had caused the  broadcaster’s business to be carried out in a manner likely to create a substantial risk of serious loss to TBC’s customer’s and government.

This morning’s statement widens the controversy surrounding Piukala’s dismissil from several government positions.

Kaniva news reported yesterday that Prime Minister Tu’i’onetoa said Piukala has been removed as chair of the Shared Communication Boards because of underperformance.

The Shared Communication Boards included the Tonga Broadcasting Commission (TBC), Tonga Communication Cooperation (TCC), and the Tonga Post & Fast Print Ltd (TPFPL).

The government had already revoked his appointment as head of the government’s electronics reform programme.

The main points

  • Sacked chair of the Shared Communication Boards Piveni Piukala said this morning the Prime Minister had not provided enough evidence to justify his recommendation to suspend three TBC staff members.
  • The Tongan Broadcasting Commission has cited a letter of termination sent to Piukala in which his refusal to suspend the three officers was given as a reason for his sacking.

For more information

Director of Shared Communication Boards Piveni Piukala fired, PM says he was ‘incompetent’

Piveni Piukala responded to allegations made by Public Enterprises

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