11 Oct 2004

Tonga magazine returns after court ruling

4:52 pm on 11 October 2004

The operator of the monthly magazine Matangi Tonga says the publication will be on the streets of Tonga in the new year.

Pesi Fonua's comments come after the Chief Justice ruled the Kingdom's recently introduced Media Laws were void because they contravened Clause 7 of the Constitution.

Mr Fonua says the ruling is a victory for press freedom and will result in the relaunching of Matangi Tonga in print.

He says because of the legislation requiring applicants to relicence every year they had lost advertisers, meaning the company had to use the internet to publish its material rather than hard-copy.

"Since the introduction of this legislation last year we have refocused the operation, where our energy has been focusing on in the past few months, but now with this court decision we have to reorganise and eventually we will come out with a print-version of the Matangi Tonga."

Mr Fonua says he will decide whether to sue the government for financial damages this week.