When the crunch of Tonga’s huge debt to China becomes critical in the new financial year 2013-14, the government, naturally, will be looking for someone to blame. … The failure of the government and parliament to present a transparent, accountable and comprehensive report on the destruction and the reconstruction of the Nuku’alofa CBD remains the most controversial issue for the government of Lord Tu’ivakano, since he came into office on December 2010. Editor’s Comment by Pesi Fonua
The Friendly Islands Bookshop today moved back to the Tungi Colonnade building in the Nuku’alofa Central Business District, exactly six-years to the day since the riots and fire on November 16, 2006 destroyed the shop, warehouse and stock amounting to $1.2 million pa’anga in unrecoverable losses.
Four local companies who were suing their insurance company for cover over damage to their properties in the riots of 16 November 2006, ended their case today on the basis that no party paid costs. The plaintiffs were disappointed to pull out as the evidence in court about the riots favoured the defence position that the riots resulted from “a popular rising, people connected with an organisation the objects of which included influencing the government by violent means and terrorism.”
The Minister of Justice, Hon Clive Edwards told the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court on Friday, November 9, that three businesses, associated with the Prime Minister, the monarchy and their business partners were targeted in violence in central Nuku’alofa on 16 November 2006.
‘Isileli Pulu, who followed a crowd of rioters and witnessed damage to businesses during the 16 November 2006 Nuku’alofa riots, was vigorously questioned on his movements on that day, when he gave evidence in an insurance case heard at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court yesterday. During the hard questioning the judge warned ‘Isileli that he may not answer any questions if he felt it might incriminate himself.
During ‘Akilisi Pohiva’s first two days of giving evidence, in an insurance case heard in the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court this week, he was questioned closely about the ingredients for violent demonstration that were evident on November 16, 2006, when the central business district was destroyed by rioters. He told the court he had no connection to the rioters.
Eight plaintiffs of local businesses whose properties were damaged and gutted by fire during the riots of November 16, 2006 are suing their insurance company the National Pacific Insurance (Tonga) Ltd, for coverage.
People’s Representative ‘Akilisi Pohiva who is accused of swearing in the House on Wednesday, September 26, is now facing a possible suspension from parliament. From the House by Pesi Fonua.
Since Monday, September 10, the Tongan Parliament has been trying to decide what to do with a new motion by the Minister of Justice, Hon. Clive Edwards for a parliamentary select committee to go and find out why protesters burned the Nuku’alofa Central Business District on 16 November 2006. Clive’s new motion riled up emotional and aggressive comments from members of the House who reminded him that there were court cases and they had got off, but if he wanted to go back to the past they might get caught this time. From the House, by Pesi Fonua.