New female judge appointed as King’s chancellor expected to shed light on Justice Niu’s contract queries

    The Supreme Court Registrar has announced the appointment of Lawyer Petunia Tupou as new Supreme Court judge.

    “Please be advised that His Majesty in Council has approved the appointment of Mrs Petunia Tupou KC as a Judge of the Supreme Court and Land Court of Tonga”, the Registrar said in a statement. 

    Justice Tupou was the second female justice appointed after Magistrate ‘Elisapeti Langi. Langi was also an Acting Supreme Court judge.

    Justice Tupou was one of the king’s counsellors.

    The appointment came after allegations swirling on social media that the Supreme Court Judge Laki Niu’s contract ended and will no longer be sitting on Tonga’s top court.

    When asked about Judge Niu’s job, the Registrar said:

    “The Lord Chancellor will issue a press statement regarding this tomorrow”.

    The king through his Privy Council oversees the appointments of some key public servants including the police commissioner, judges and the attorney general.

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