Tonga’s Chief Justice has refused an application by a former Prime Minister Lord Sevele and a former Minister of Transport Paul Karalus, for a judicial review of a report of a special parliamentary committee, because he did not find that the Supreme Court had any jurisdiction to review the internal proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga. The applicants were claiming that their reputations were damaged by a report of the parliamentary committee.
From the Courts
Two policemen and another man who are accused of the manslaughter of a New Zealand police officer Kali Fungavaka, who died from injuries received in police custody in 2012, made their first appearance at the Supreme Court in Nuku’alofa before Mr Justice Charles Cato this morning, who will hear two appeals on June 24 before a trial date is set.
A Nuku’alofa Magistrate has ruled there was no case to answer in accusations made against Tonga’s Prime Minister Lord Tu’ivakano, the Minister of Justice Hon Clive Edwards, and a Tongan company Tongasat, headed by HRH Princess Pilolevu Tuita, who appeared before the court last week.
Nuku’alofa businessman, and former parliamentary candidate, Saia Moehau, and Epic International Ltd., have lost an appeal over Westpac Bank of Tonga’s claim against him in seeking to recover debts amounting to over $1 million pa’anga.
The Crown lodged an appeal last week against a decision by Nuku’alofa Magistrate Salesi Mafi to release three of the six men accused of manslaughter in relation to the death of New Zealand Police officer Kali Fungavaka.
An appeal by an American couple who were not granted the adoption of a six-year Tongan boy last year but were granted the adoption of his one-year-old half sister was dismissed by Tonga’s Appeal Court on April 17. The female child is now living in the United States, while the boy remains in Tonga with the natural mother and grandmother.
The first sitting of Tonga’s Court of Appeal ended at the Supreme in Nuku’alofa on April 17 and delivered judgements, that quashed a 13-years imprisonment sentence and replaced it with six-years for a man who was convicted of raping his sister-in-law while holding a knife to her neck.
Three of the six men accused of manslaughter in relation to the death of New Zealand police officer Kali Fungavaka will face trial at the Supreme Court, while three others were released today in Nuku‘alofa.
Tonga’s Court of Appeal Session began at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court on 8 April with a new judge Hon. Sir Peter Blanchard, and will hear 10 cases, including appeals over sentencing in two rape cases.
Tonga’s Chief Justice Hon. Michael Scott is to decide whether the Supreme Court has the jurisdiction to review the internal proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga, in an application brought by Tonga’s former Prime Minister Lord Sevele and Paul Karalus, a former Minister of Transport, who are claiming that their reputations were damaged by the Report of a Parliamentary Select Committee.