14 Apr 2009

Tongan magistrate scolded for comments on domestic violence

3:14 pm on 14 April 2009

A magistrate in Tonga has been criticised for making remarks in court that justify domestic violence.

According to the Tonga Chronicle, Uikilifi Taukei'aho was sentenced to one year's probation for attacking his wife with hedging shears.

The court heard that Taukei'aho had gone into a jealous rage when he returned home to find his wife speaking with her ex-husband.

While Magistrate Latu Mohena said Taukei'aho shouldn't have beaten his wife, he also said the reason behind his anger was justifiable.

The general manager of the Tongan national centre for women and children, Ofa Guttenbeil-Likiliki, says this view is unacceptable and absurd.

"There should be no justification for domestic violence whatsoever. And it goes against the principles of the tonga national centre for women and children where we promote zero tolerance to domestic violence."

Ofa Guttenbeil-Likiliki says the case has opened up discussion among the public on domestic violence.