4 Mar 2008

Tonga Community Law Centre under resourced, needs funds urgently

3:12 pm on 4 March 2008

A lawyer at Tonga's Community Law Centre is appealing to the government or aid donors for more financial support so it can continue to operate.

Ofa Pouono says 75-percent of his case load involves defendants charged over the riot in late 2006.

He says his clients need legal aid, as they are unable to represent themselves, or have little or no money.

Ofa Pouono says he's paying from his own government funded salary to run the under resourced centre.

"We moved in, we took up our appointment [and] at the same time to be able to do our other legal work . We have to pay out from our own pocket, the expenses for the community law work."

Ofa Pouono of the Tonga Community Law Centre.