13 Jul 2010

Tonga's PSA says PM may grant farewell payment to MPs

1:53 pm on 13 July 2010

Tonga's Public Service Association says the Prime Minister may grant MPs a farewell payment when parliament disbands later this year, as he never listens to the voice of the people.

Last month, a People's representative Sione Feingatau 'Iloa asked Dr Feleti Sevele to give MPs what he described as a farewell monetary blanket.

Dr Sevele says he will decide on the request once he has received an update on the state of the economy next month.

The PSA has called on the Prime Minister not to grant the payment, saying its unreasonable at a time when the Government has cut spending because it claims it doesn't have the money.

But its secretary Mele Amanaki says its unclear if Dr Sevele will heed their call

"What we have heard in parliament, is they have said there is 24 million dollars that hasn't been used and that's the amount of money they want to divide amongst themselves. There's a whole lot of things that need to be improved in Tonga that they need that 24 million to go into those things for the services to the public."

Mele Amanaki says MPs have a pension which is enough of a farewell blanket.