28 Jul 2003

Tongan government loses appeal over Taimi O Tonga newspaper

9:04 am on 28 July 2003

The Tongan government has lost its case against the Taimi OTonga newspaper in the Court of Appeal.

The Court has ruled that two recent bans imposed by the government on the paper were illegal.

The paper's publisher, Kalafi Moala, says he believes the government will comply with the court ruling this time.

But Mr Moala says there is still a battle to face over proposed legislation to curb media freedom:

"We'll continue to do what we're doing although we're still quite insecure about our operations in Tonga because there are new legislations that are being introduced to the house which will be debated next week. If those legislations are passed, that's a major curbing of the freedom of the press."

Mr Moala says he will file a claim for damages against the Tongan government later this week