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16-11

A Press Statement with facts

San Francisco, USA

Editor,

On Jan 2007, Lopeti Senituli wrote you a letter stating that his Press Statement publicized on the Internet by you on December 28, 2006 are his “opinions and conclusions…..and not that of the Government of Tonga.” I am disagreeing with Lopeti Senituli that his Press Statement was his “opinions and conclusions……..and not that of the Government of Tonga.” Here are my reasons for disagreeing with Lopeti Senituli:-



(1) In his “21-page press statement entitled, ‘The Attempted Coup of 16 November 2006’ Lopeti Senituli also brings to light government insider information on the build-up to the events of November 16……” This statement is not a product of “opinions and conclusions”; it is a concrete stamement of fact.



(2) Lopeti Senituli said, “The membership of the People’s Committee for Political Reform (PCPR) must bear the full responsibility for the violence and deaths of 16 November.” Using the word, “must” in this statement is somewhat forceful and hardly are “opinions and conclusions” but a concrete statement of fact.



(3) “He identified the key members of the PCPR as Dr. Tu’i Uata, Clive Edwards, and Mele ‘Amanaki ………as the extremists for opposing the formation of the Tripartite Committee…….”Again, I don’t think that this statement is a result of some “opinions and conclusions”; it again is a concrete statement of fact.



(4) Lopeti Senituli again said, “It is this People’s Committee for Political Reform that was responsible for the violaence of 16 November, 2006.” Again, Lopeti Senituli is accusing the members of the PCPR as he does in item (2). Not a statement of “opinions and conclusions”; but another statement of fact.



(5) Most of Lopeti Senituli’s press stament was composed of the chronological sequence of inside government activities before and during the events that led up to the “Black Thursday.” These are not “opinions and conclusions” and I am wondering if and why he had a permission to disclose inside government informations to facilitate his accusations of the members of the PCPR.



The main reason why the above statements are not “opinions and conclusions” is because they lack qualifiers to be categorized as “opinions and conclusions.” These statements do not have qualifiers such as “In my opinion,….” ; “I think…………..”; “It appears…”; and “may be..” to qualify them as “opinions and conclusions.” I do not recall seeing these qualifiers used by Lopeti Senituli in his whole press statement. I think that if Lopeti Senituli’s statements of accusation cease to be “opinions and conclusions”, he should apologize to the people he unfairly accused. In his retraction of Jan 2 2006, Lopeti Senituli should focus on apologizing to the specific people he accused and not on trying to clear the government and himself for his wrongs. As a professional, he should know by now that everyone is innocent until proven guilty in a Court of Law. I think the most professional, ethical, and responsible thing for him to do was to have waited for the dispositions of the courts before he publicized his accusations to be read by thousands of the people of the world. This is very damaging because of the great number of people who may read the accusations in question. As an Advisor to the Premier of the Kingdom of Tonga, Lopeti Senituli has a higher degree of duties and responsibilities to all the people of Tonga. Careful ! !



Yours sincerely,



Siosaia Fatani.



sstuakoi [at] yahoo [dot] com (mailto:sstuakoi [at] yahoo [dot] com)