ParliamentThursday, May 27, 2004 - 11:45
A group of Tongan People's Representatives are calling for the resignation of Tonga's Prime Minister, Prince 'Ulukalala Lavaka Ata, after boycotting the opening of the Tonga Legislative Assembly by the King this morning.
Tongatapu People's Representative, Fred Sevele, said that they did not attend the opening of the 2004 parliamentary session because they were, “disappointed that the Prime Minister's lack of action as chairman of the failed Royal Tongan Airlines has caused millions of dollars of the people's money to be frittered away.
TravelWednesday, May 26, 2004 - 15:02
About 450 people were rescued in small boats, after Tonga’s inter-island ferry ran aground on the Hakauloa reef in the early hours of Wednesday morning, about a mile outside the Pangai Harbour in the Ha’apai group.
Royalty & NobilityMonday, May 24, 2004 - 15:42
Tongan Nobleman Hon. Fakafanua Kinikinilau Lelea 'a Fafine was laid to rest today at the Vakataumai burial ground at Ma'ufanga.
His 'apo or night of mourning was held May 23 at his residence, Siumafua'uta, where ongoing prayer services were conducted by various church denominations until the early morning.
At 10 am his catafalque was carried by about 50 men to Vakataumai cemetery. The Hon. Fakafanua Kinikinilau Lelea 'a Fafine was born on 7 May 1934, and he succeeded his father Fakafanua Kisione Lelea 'a Fafine, the sixth holder of the noble title on 7 May 1955
Photo NewsSunday, May 23, 2004 - 10:07
The night of mourning (‘Apo) for the Nobleman Hon. Fakafanua was held at his residence, Siumafua’uta, Ma’ufanga on 23 May 2004.
LettersFriday, May 21, 2004 - 16:08
GovernmentFriday, May 21, 2004 - 14:58
Tonga has not received any international mail this week, while about forty bags of Tongan mail are still stranded in Air New Zealand’s cargo office in Auckland, following the collapse of Royal Tongan Airlines, which used to share the mail load.
There was no cargo space for the mail on the Air New Zealand flight last night (May 20).
From the CourtsWednesday, May 19, 2004 - 16:29
A Judicial Review, challenging government over the amendment of Clause 7 of the Tongan Constitution in November 2003 will be heard by Chief Justice Gordon Ward at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court on June 17-18.
The application for a Judicial Review was filed by 152 plaintiffs on May 5, claiming that the amendment of Clause 7 relating to Freedom of Speech was unconstitutional.
Royalty & NobilityWednesday, May 19, 2004 - 15:46
The remains of the late Hon. Fakafanua, a Tongan nobleman, who died in Hawaii on May 13, will be returned to Tonga early Friday May 21, for burial on Monday May 24.
Mele Tu'iha'angana one of Fakafanua's daughters confirmed that Fakafanua (70) passed away in Honolulu, Hawai'i, on the morning of May 13.
TravelWednesday, May 19, 2004 - 15:22
Royal Tongan Airlines ceased operation yesterday, closing its offices in Tonga, and about 100 people who were still employed in the airline's domestic service were told the bad news that they too have lost their jobs.
Only the accounting division of Royal Tongan is still in operation and an accounting officer said that all the employees who were laid off yesterday were promised by RTA administration one-month's salary plus their super-annuation.
RugbyMonday, May 17, 2004 - 16:51
The top 30 rugby players from Fiji, Samoa and Tonga will be picked for the combined Pacific Islanders Rugby Alliance team to play the All Blacks, Wallabies and the Springboks in early July.
Only the best players will be selected, said Charlie Charters, the CEO of the Pacific Islands Rugby Alliance, in Nuku'alofa on May 12, who has the unenviable task of fielding a team against some of the best in the world, working with a fraction of the budget that those teams enjoy.
RugbyFriday, May 14, 2004 - 16:52
A visiting Samoa A rugby union team beat the Tonga A 15-10 at Nuku'alofa's Teufaiva Stadium, on May 13, with the kicking skills of their No. 10, Roger Warren, who converted four penalties and a drop goal by their Fullback, Lolo Lui.
Half-time score was 9-3, with two converted penalties by Roger and the drop goal by Lui.
EconomyFriday, May 14, 2004 - 15:51
Tonga's official Foreign Reserve in April reached the highest point for this year.
The reserve increased by $4.1 million, from $56.3 million in March to $60.4 million in April, an amount equivalent to 3.5 months of imports of goods.
The Foreign Reserve in January was $54.9 million, then it went down in February to $54.3 million, before it began to go up again in March.
News MediaWednesday, May 12, 2004 - 15:59
The Minister of Justice, ‘Aisea Taumoepeau, on Monday May 10 tried to reassure Tongan journalists that they should not feel threatened or be afraid of government following the amendment to Clause 7 of the Tongan Constitution relating to Freedom of Speech.
Last year the changes to the constitution neutralised free speech so that government could pass suppressive media legislation that was illegal when free speech was guaranteed by the constitution.
TravelWednesday, May 12, 2004 - 15:24
Royal Tongan Airlines has confirmed today that using other airlines they have uplifted nearly all of the 1,300 passengers stranded in Nuku'alofa, Auckland, Sydney, Rarotonga and Honolulu since the RTA international service was grounded on April 22.
Last Friday May 7 there were 59 passengers stranded in Tonga still waiting to be uplifted with 28 for Auckland,12 for Sydney and for Honolulu. Some of these have been uplifted in the last few days.
Foreign AffairsTuesday, May 11, 2004 - 15:03
The people of ‘Eua will soon experience better roads thanks to a $313,375 New Zealand-funded project, which will start to upgrade the island’s agricultural and tourism roads beginning next week.
The grant was approved in the last week of April by the New Zealand Agency for International Development (NZID).
The Tonga Ministry of Works will carry out the construction work, said Maliepo Toma, of the New Zealand High Commission.
From the CourtsMonday, May 10, 2004 - 16:02
Newspaper activist ‘Alani Taione pleaded not guilty to charges relating to the importation of an unlicenced newspaper the Taimi ‘o Tonga, and will face trial by jury on a date to be set.
The not guilty plea was accepted by Justice Ford in Taione’s absence at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court on May 10.
RugbyThursday, May 6, 2004 - 16:54
Eighteen local Tongan rugby players and 12 from abroad grabbed the …Ikale Tahi Jersey when Tonga’s national Rugby team was announced by new coach, Viliami …Ofahengaue, on May 5.
Team manager, Sione Petelo, said that 13 of the local players are wearing the jersey for the first time, including two players that represented Tonga recently in the Under 21 national rugby team.
News MediaWednesday, May 5, 2004 - 15:57
Police are investigating a complaint that a Tongan journalist was punched in the face by a top level public servant in what appeared to be a road rage incident on Sunday May 1.
The incident occurred on the main highway of Hala Hihifo following morning church services.
News MediaWednesday, May 5, 2004 - 15:41
SportsWednesday, May 5, 2004 - 09:16
Tongan boxer Douglas Hawke has qualified to represent Tonga in the Athens Olympic in the Super Heavyweight boxing.
Hawke, known in Tonga as Ma'afu Tu'itonga Naufahu, was the only Tongan to qualify for the Olympic in the Olympic Qualifying Oceania Championships held in Tonga at the 'Atele Indoor Stadium, Ha'ateiho from April 28 to May 1.
He was declared winner of the over 91 kg final against Angus Shelford of New Zealand after Shelford failed to appear for the bout.