19 Nov 2014

Call for Tonga's politicians to work together

6:57 pm on 19 November 2014

The dumped deputy leader of Tonga's Democratic Party, Sitiveni Halapua, says it is vital politicians learn to work with each other.

The well known academic fell out with the Democrats and its leader, Akilisi Pohiva, after he pushed for a more collegial style of government.

Dr Halapua had considered standing in next week's elections but instead plans to work on a book and continue with development issues in Tonga's outer islands.

He says he believes the people's confidence in their leaders depends on MPs showing them the benefits of this greater democracy.

"To me that can only be achieved or can only be shown through political leaders, particularly parliamentarians and Akilisi, showing leadership in trying to work together. Even with people they don't trust, I mean that is the nature of politics, you have to reach out to work with those that you think you have difficulty with, for the sake of the people and for the sake of the country."

The former deputy leader of Tonga's Democratic Party, Sitiveni Halapua.