I have reservation on Dr. Koloamatangi’s thoughts. A thorough dissertation will be for another day but my history memory reminds me that Europeans left England in the early 16th and 17th seeking freedom from the English monarchy. Those that ended up on the Kingdom’s shores realize that they are jumping from one dictatorial regime to another. Dr. Koloamatangi thinks that the visitors were quite happy because it is just like back home.
To the contrary, I’ll argue. Baker and the founding father’s of our constitution wanted a change, thus the need for a constitution. However, Baker understood the negative consequences of rushing change to Tonga’s Political system for obvious reasons. Two most important of these reasons are:
1) Tonga has been a monarchy since the beginning of time and
2) Tonga’s political system was ingrained in the hearts and souls of the total population that it is the culture itself. He knew that at the time, it would be an insurmountable task to push aside generations of tradition cultures.
Today, I can assure you with a very strong conviction that if (as Mokofisi put) there is no genuine “check-and-balance” mechanism in the new or any future political system in Tonga, it will not work efficiently and fairly.
Yesterday, a beloved city was burned; property destroyed and lives lost because certain misled politicians in the Kingdom forced the demolition of a regime. Today, the politicians propose a set up where the power is going to be in the hands of a gang of dictators commonly referred to as People’s Representatives. This reminds me of a story where the late Sadam of Iraqi told a group of death prisoners that because he is a just and fair ruler he is going to abolish the Muslim traditional stoning-to-death method and is giving them a chance to choose between hanging or a firing squad.
For a small country like ours, the Constitutional Monarchy is still my preferred system. However, because we are now in a more sophisticated time and age, the system needed an infusion of a check-and-balance mechanism where the executive (King’s) power subject to evaluation and change.
In vain we build a political system for Tonga, if a check-and-balance mechanism is not genuinely considered and installed.
Sione Lousiale Kava
slkava [at] hotmail [dot] com