13 Jan 2016

Tonga PM reflects on first year in office

12:48 pm on 13 January 2016

The Prime Minister of Tonga has promoted the notion of collective responsibility and what he calls integrated governance.

Tonga Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva.

Tonga Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva. Photo: RNZ

At the annual Public Service thanksgiving service, 'Akilisi Pohiva has also acknowledged the difficulties faced by his government in its first year.

Mr Pohiva says the government used the compass of good governance in its maiden year and will continue to do so going forward.

He says the big challenge will be how to accomplish their goals following the aftershock of what he calls 'the stormy seas through which they sailed over the past year'.

2015 saw a government MP Mateni Tapueluelu lose his seat after a court decision found him ineligible for election and Tourism and Infrastructure minister 'Etuate Lavulavu in court on bribery charges.

There's also been criticism over a controversial Forbes Magazine advertorial that cost US$150,000 and unsuccessful efforts to ratify a UN convention on women's rights.

The Prime Minister says the way forward will have to include strategies to combat corruption within a good governance structure.

Mr Pohiva also used bibilical references to illustrate how the government needed to work diligently with the people to produce a successful nation.

He declared this the 'Integrated Governance for Tonga' and says it will be the theme of all work in the coming year.

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