Tonga's Magistrate Courts report a shortage of magistrates with their number dropping to four.
The Matangi Tonga website reports that the figure marks a decline from ten magistrates last year.
This means that Ha'apai no longer has a magistrate, making it necessary for a magistrate from Tongatapu to visit Ha'apai once a month.
It also means that fewer cases can be processed.
Two vacancies have been readvertised because a first attempt to attract applications has been unsuccessful.