12 Sep 2017

Sacked Tonga Ministers not involved in dissolution - Speaker

12:03 pm on 12 September 2017

Tonga's Speaker of the House has dismissed as false and unfounded, claims that two cabinet ministers were involved in moves that led to the dissolution of Parliament.

Siale ʻAtaongo Kaho, Lord Tuʻivakanō

The speaker of Tonga's Parliament Lord Tuʻivakanō. Photo: RNZ/Daniela Maoate-Cox

Last month King Tupou VI dissolved Parliament and called elections a year early after the speaker, Lord Tu'ivakano, approached him with concerns over the government's conduct.

Tu'ivakano said it had acted unconstitutionally and had attempted to gather power for itself.

Following the dissolution the now caretaker Prime Minister, 'Akilisi Pohiva, sacked his deputy, Siaosi Sovaleni and Finance Minister, Tevita Lavemaau .

Tonga's caretaker PM 'Akilisi Pohiva

Tonga's caretaker PM 'Akilisi Pohiva Photo: RNZI/Monica Miller

No reason was given but there were reports that the pair had been supportive of the Speaker's approach to the King.

However Tu'ivakano said the two were not involved and did not know about his actions.

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