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Sunday 30 March 2003

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Why did government decide to prohibit the import of the 14 year old Taimi ‘o Tonga in February? If the politics of the campaigning newspaper wasn’t the real issue, as government spokespeople were claiming, we asked, then what was? From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 18, no. 1, March 2003.
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Saturday 30 November 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
The government’s current Economic and Public Sector Reform program, is a futile exercise, believes Dr Feleti Sevele, the Tongatapu no. 2 People’s Representative, in the Tongan Legislature. He says it won’t work until government learns to interact with the productive members of the community. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 3, November 2002.
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Saturday 30 November 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
The walk-out by all of the nine People’s Representatives from the Tongan Legislative Assembly on October 21 had to be the highlight of the 2002 parliamentary session, but it was not all what it seemed to be. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 3, November 2002.
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Saturday 30 November 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
The Vava‘u no. 2 People’s Representative, ‘Etuate Lavulavu, is another Member of Parliament who feels that the government’s Economic and Public Sector Reform Program will never work, unless the people are included in the decision-making process. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 3, November 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
The Tongan 2002 triennial Parliamentary General Election has set a landmark in the development of Tongan politics for the 21st century, with some unprecedented events. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
While the new Kotoa Movement, formed last year, sees itself as a non-political charity organisation, they also say their movement is working toward thwarting any uprising which could disrupt development. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Following the report of damning comments about Tonga by a New Zealand Cabinet Minister and his associate in the New Zealand press, Matangi Tonga tried to arrange a telephone interview with the New Zealand Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Phil Goff and the Associate Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Matt Robson. After trying repeatedly for several days, we were unable to get a clarification from Robson who was the most aggressive in his accusations against the Tongan government and Royal Family. Mr Goff, however, replied to emailed questions, as follows. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Tonga’s Chief Secretary and the Secretary for Cabinet, Mrs ‘Eseta Fusitu‘a, dismissed the USA Department of State report as having been doctored, not factual and incomplete. “A report of this nature, I am sure, is used as a reference by international organisations, but we have never been asked to comment.” From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Tonga’s Prime Minister announced on February 14 that there was a serious turn in Tonga’s relationship with New Zealand in the wake of unsubstantiated accusations made by New Zealand’s foreign ministry. The Prime Minister Prince ‘Ulukalala Lavaka Ata believed that a New Zealand Ministerial attack which ridiculed the Tongan government and Tonga’s Royal family was an attempt to influence Tonga’s March General Election, and “to take the moral high ground, to say they are holier than us, and to dictate to other countries what New Zealand wants”. Prince ‘Ulukalala Lavaka Ata was responding to the accusations at a press conference he called in Nuku‘alofa. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Tongans responded with shock and outrage after the New Zealand Foreign Ministry publicly accused the Tongan government of corruption, expressing concern about the state of democracy in the country and saying that the Tongan government appeared reluctant to introduce constitutional changes. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Tongan Prime Minister, Prince ‘Ulukalala Lavaka Ata in early May commented on the reforms facing Tonga. Interview By Pesi Fonua. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Thursday 30 May 2002

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Lopeti Senituli, the full time Director of the Tonga Human Rights and Democracy Movement says that his organisation wants to change Tonga’s structure of government, first with a mass movement and then later by introducing political parties. Interview by Pesi Fonua. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 17, no. 1, May 2002.
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Saturday 30 September 2000

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
While Tonga’s economy is under pressure from the Reserve Bank, because of a steep dive in the Foreign Reserve; and while the Private Sector and the government are preoccupied with far-sighted new projects in telecommunications, power generation and the marketing of Tongan produce overseas—projects that could secure a place for Tonga in the global economy of the 21st century—Parliament, somehow, has been looking inwards, and preoccupying itself with its internal affairs. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 15, no. 3, September 2000.
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Saturday 30 September 2000

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Hon. Veikune, the Speaker of the Tongan Legislative Assembly, first entered Parliament in 1975 as one of two Noble’s representatives for Vava‘u. During his 22 years in the House, Hon. Veikune has served as Chairman of the Whole House Committee, and last year was appointed by the King as the new Speaker. Recently he has taken part in a regional seminar on Parliamentary democracy, and here comments on the stability of the Tongan parliamentary system, as seen from the nobility’s viewpoint. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 15, no. 3, September 2000.
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Saturday 30 September 2000

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Lopeti Senituli, the former Director of the Pacific Concerns Resource Centre, took over as the new Director of the Tonga Human Rights and Democracy Movement in July. - Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 15, no. 3, September 2000.
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Thursday 1 June 2000

Nuku'alofa, Tonga
‘Eseta Fusitu‘a, a key government spokesperson on Tongan affairs denies a claim that there is no accountability in the Tongan political system. She says that Tongans must find their own way and not be herded into accepting a foreign system. ‘Eseta is Deputy Chief Secretary and Deputy Secretary to Cabinet, and heads the Government Information Unit. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 15, no. 2, June 2000.
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Thursday 1 June 2000

Nuku'alofa, Tonga
It was success at last for Koliniasi Afuha’amango (72), the newly elected Vava’u People’s Representative to the Tongan Legislative Assembly, taking over from William Harris, the Vava’u No. One People’s Representative who died last year. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 15, no. 2, June 2000.
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Monday 20 March 2000

Nuku'alofa, Tonga
(From our archives, March 2000). In a Millennium interview with Matangi Tonga, Baron Vaea, a former Prime Minister of Tonga - then 78 years old, talked about Tonga’s privatization program of government businesses and how forestry in ‘Eua was developed with New Zealand aid over 26 years. Commenting on a wide range of issues, Baron Vaea also observed that Tongans show unwillingness to part with the past and join the rest of the world. “A big percentage of the population are focusing on that [Christian] life style, while there are other issues such as manufacturing, food production, areas which will require a certain amount of commitment,” he said.
Monday 20 March 2000

Nuku‘alofa, Tonga
Minister of Police, Clive Edwards said he was concerned about reports that New Zealand was going to fund Tonga’s Pro Democracy and Human Rights Movement, and he believed that it would interfere with Tonga’s political stability. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 15, no. 1, March 2000.
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Wednesday 1 December 1999

Nuku'alofa, Tonga
The last session of the Tongan Legislative Assembly of the century was closed by King Taufa‘ahau Tupou IV on November 22, at Queen Salote Memorial Hall with Cabinet ministers and the Members of Parliament. From Matangi Tonga Magazine Vol. 14, no. 4, December 1999.
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