Tonga needs to find ways to boost the local economy, said HM King Tupou VI when he opened the 2013 Session of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga at Parliament House, on June 13.
Hundreds of secondary and tertiary school students with lively brass bands from throughout Tongatapu marched through central Nuku’alofa on Thursday, June 13 to mark the opening of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga 2013 Session.
The Minister of Finance, Hon. Lisiate ‘Akolo has launched Tonga’s biggest ever national budget amounting to T$357.6 million for the 2014-15 financial year, and expressed concern over low returns to government from public enterprises.
A new donor-funded programme aims to develop the skills of parliamentarians in order to improve law-making processes in Tonga and to strengthen the ability of the government to build democracy.
The changes to the Constitution [clause 23] regarding the ability to continue to sit in the assembly or hold any office means that a “convicted” person who is sentenced to less than 2 years can still sit in the assembly and hold office. This does send a rather odd message to the public and the world - that the Tongan house of parliament and the Cabinet will allow a convicted person, whose character is thereby reduced, to still hold office! - John Cauchi
A parliamentary education and outreach team is on a mission to inform and equip teachers and students in Tonga’s Secondary Schools with better knowledge of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga.
A hearing on an application for a Judicial Review of the Report of a Parliamentary Select Committee that investigated how a multi-million pa’anga loan from China was spent on the reconstruction of Nuku’alofa was adjourned to April 4. Five of the six committee members, who are defendants in this case, appeared at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court on Wednesday January 23 unprepared for the hearing and without legal representation.
The Standing Committee on Legislation will resume its public consultations next week.
Tonga’s former Prime Minister Lord Sevele is calling for a judicial review of the report of a parliamentary select committee, in an application to the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court that will be heard on 23 January 2013.
Claims in Tonga’s parliament that there was an illegal transference of government money to Tongasat have been denied by two Prime Ministers, in a row over how a USD$75 million grant from China to Tonga was used.