13 Jan 2011

Meeting restrictions in Tuvalu to ease political tension

1:54 pm on 13 January 2011

The government of Tuvalu has moved quickly to try and diffuse the tension over attempts by one of the island communities to remove its member of parliament.

The Prime Minister, Willie Telavi, has ordered that no public gathering be held on the main island of Funafuti for two weeks.

According to Pacnews, the public order allows for only up to 10 persons to gather or meet in a public place.

Tension was high on Wednesday when hundreds of community leaders and members of the Nukufetau island community marched to the home of its member of parliament, Lotoala Metia, to demand his resignation.

Mr Metia is in the government, while the other MP from Nukufetau, Enele Sopoanga, is in the opposition.

Mr Telavi came to power last month after he crossed the floor and succeeded in removing Maatia Toafa from the prime ministership.