16 Mar 2005

Tongan elections will include six thousand new voters

9:51 am on 16 March 2005

Some six thousand new voters will be among those going to the polls in Tonga tomorrow to elect nine members for the 30 member Assembly.

12 members of the Assembly are appointed, while today (wed) the 33 noble families will choose nine members from within their ranks.

Tonga's election supervisor, Pita Vuki, says the government was determined that the maximum number of voters could and would participate in the vote.

To this end, electoral officials concentrated on updating the rolls, setting up eighteen extra polling stations throughout the Kingdom and increasing the number of registered voters by enrolling as may eligible Tongans as possible.

Pita Vuki says the nation is on target to hold perhaps the most widely distributed polling in recent memory.