11 Apr 2007

Tongan government appoints adviser on Reconciliation and Civic Education

6:55 pm on 11 April 2007

The Tongan government has appointed a former people's representative to a new position as an adviser on Reconciliation and Civic Education.

The appointment of Viliami Afeaki as the adviser to the prime minister follows the riots that destroyed Nuku'alofa in November last year.

The government says reconciliation cannot be forced on anyone but it hopes to build a consensus through dialogue.

Mr Afeaki says he would like to be able to set out a roadmap for the government.

"I'm talking to a lot of people, a lot of groups, seeing what kind of reconciliation are they looking at - leaders, churches, community leaders, parliamentarians. I'm hearing all kinds and from there, hopefully I can in the next little while, do a roadmap and see where we go from there."

Mr Afeaki says he expects to present a plan to the prime minister in about a month.