Democracy no longer the issue - Tongan election analyst
: The Tonga Democrats believe they can be the new government despite only taking 9 seats in the election.
Tonga's Democratic Party remains confident it can form the new government with a probable election of the prime minister on December the 29th.
Publisher Kalafi Moala who is closely linked to Akilisi Pohiva's Democrats says they are garnering support from both independent MPs and the nobles.
This comes after the Democrats performed much more poorly than they thought they would and Don Wiseman asked Mr Moala what went wrong.
KALAFI MOALA: 2010 it was ideological, people who were the supporters of democracy, voted for candidates who stood ideologically for democracy. Now when it comes to this year, the majority of candidates, actually the democratic ideology was not an issue. They believed in it. And of course the party, the pro-democracy party led by Akilisi Pohiva were appointing candidates who stood for democracy but the issue was no longer democracy.
DON WISEMAN: This is something of a snub isn't it?
KM: Well, yes and no, nine out of seventeen were still a majority of seats and of course immediately after the election you had one of those who stood independently he came in and said, yeah I was part of the party anyway even though I didn't stand for the party and he came in and so that made 10 of them. And so out of 17 there are 10 that are standing right now to form a majority government.
DW: But the party wanted all seventeen didn't it and it was emphatic about that?
KM: Definitely, definitely which would have enabled them to be able to be able to go into government immediately, they got the majority, they definitely wanted the 17.
DW: Leading into the election I was speaking with Akilisi Pohiva and he said the emphasis was on this need to have all of parliament elected by the people and that's where their emphasis was. And perhaps that's not something that bothers people too much and that maybe needs to change.
KM: The only reason for the emphasis, in my observation, to have all elected representatives of the people, is that they had hoped that by doing that they would be able to have the issues of good governance and accountability and all of that because people voted for these guys. But it is very apparent now that quite a number of the independent candidates, it's just absolutely impossible to try to form a government with them, because some of those are right now under investigation, some of them have issues. One of them for example was the deputy prime minister in the last government and it was very, very obvious, good governance was not an issue at all with them. So because of that, they have opened the door, the door for the nobles representatives to be able to cross over. And right now there's talks with the nobles to forming a government not necessarily made up of all peoples representatives but as long as it is a government where they can find good governance, where they can exercise that.
DW: So the party may well work with the bulk of the nobles?
KM: Definitely, there's already a move from three of the nobles to cross over to support Pohiva and his group. At the same time, of the seven independents, there's already a split among them. Four who want to cross over and support Pohiva and his group and there's three that are hanging out there. But that's the issue right now.
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