11 Jan 2011

Two failed Tongan candidates question election results

11:12 am on 11 January 2011

Two unsuccessful candidates from Tonga's November 2010 general election are questioning the results.

The Supreme Court says a candidate of the Vava'u 14 constituency, Siale Fifita claims the winner overspent the permitted amount on his campaign, carried out election propaganda beyond the cut-off date and is also alleging cases of bribery.

It says a businessman, Siosaia Moehau who was four votes behind the winner of the Tongatapu 6 constituency is convinced he won the seat because of irregularities such as voting twice, voter impersonation and voting after the declaration.

The Supervisor of Elections in Tonga, Pita Vuki, says it is common for one or two unsuccessful candidates to file petitions after an election as the Electoral Act permits.

"It's quite normal for any candidates to file a petition if they feel there was something wrong in the conduct of elections or any behaviour of any other candidates."