I just read on Online that PM Pohiva announced on his Christmas message to the nation that government officials of the former governments who were involved in the passport scandal are soon to be arrested. How long will the PM keep on loosing the plot. The current problem is the performance of his own government, not the previous governments. Previous governments have run their course and finished. He was there during their times and has raised the passport scandal issue and as far as I am concerned, he has been found to be on the wrong by the Courts. The real issue he should rather face is his apparent incompetency in running his own government. While he should have asked for the resignations of Hon Lavulavu, he decided to leave him on without pay (which is illegal according to our Constitution). It may be recalled that earlier this year Clive Edwards brought charges of mismanagement of funds by Hon Vakata. However, we were told that that issues as such, from the previous government, PM Pohiva's government will not deal with it. Now, an issue from the previous governments, namely passport scandal, is investigated. So, who decides which issues from previous governments are to be investigated?
Moreover, the charge of nepotism cannot be truly dodged by his government. His sons being involved in executive roles in his government is much to be questioned. This, it may be recalled, is what PM Pohiva so hated in the previous political system. He did not like the King appointing his sons and people whom he trusted to executive positions in government. Right now, it appears that what was wrong with the previous political system is that he himself was not the “king”. Now that he is leader, he feels free to bring his own sons and members of his own political party to occupy senior positions in government, even in some respects, illegally.
The PM should let go of issues that were problems of previous governments and deal more directly with issues in his own government. As his government passes the one-year milestone, he still has much to prove to us the people of Tonga, that he has good governance qualities with which he could lead the country for the next three years. So far, it appears that what he was really good at, was to be a government opponent and not a government leading-man.
His first year in government has been marred by so many public complaints and appeals to the King from unhappy citizens of Tonga - in the CEDAW issue, more than half the voters were unhappy with his government. Time is running against him since six more months and Parliament can legally lodge a Vote of No Confidence.
I certainly hope and pray that he will run his course till the end so we can see this man for all that he is and was. Our question to him of course will always be, is this really the kind of democracy that we had envisioned for Tonga? During the 2016 Annual Week of Prayer in Tonga and abroad, let us pray fervently for our PM and his government, that good governance qualities will be embodied in them by God's mercy and grace.
Rev Dr Ma'afu'otu'itonga Palu