25 Sep 2009

Tonga Prime Minister's office says petition for deposement another fishing expedition

3:18 pm on 25 September 2009

The political advisor to the Tonga Prime Minister says a petition calling on Dr Feleti Sevele and his deputy to resign over last month's ferry tragedy is not being taken seriously.

A Royal Commission of Inquiry is underway into the sinking of the Princess Ashika, in which 74 people died.

The Public Service Association, a member of the group that's launched the petition, the People's Committee for Political Reform, says it has a copy of a letter proving the Prime Minister knew the boat was unseaworthy.

Lopeti Senituli says the government has spoken with the leaders of the group.

"And I enquired whether the people's representatives support this petition and the response that I got from them was no they did not support this particular petition. So as far as the government is concerned this is another fishing expedition."

Lopeti Senituli says the people behind the petition should go and do something more productive.