22 Dec 2009

Negligence admitted in Princess Ashika inquiry

4:59 pm on 22 December 2009

The former director of the marine division of Tonga's Transport Ministry has admitted negligence in his handling of the purchase of the Princess Ashika ferry.

The Matangi Tonga newspaper reports Bill Johnson making the admission to the Royal Commission investigating the ferry sinking in August, which claimed 74 lives.

Mr Johnson admitted a series of failures, including not recommending that Marine Division surveyors travel to Fiji to inspect the vessel and not sighting a current survey certificate for the Princess Ashika.