28 Oct 2014

Various factors cause fall of Tonga candidate numbers

4:24 pm on 28 October 2014

An academic says ructions in Tongan politics over the past four years may have contributed to a sharp fall in the number of candidates contesting next month's election.

106 people are to stand for the 17 People's Representatives seats, and while the number of women candidates is up, there is one third fewer men standing than in the first election for a mostly democratic parliament four years ago.

The Director of Massey University's Pasifika Centre, Malakai Koloamatangi, says it makes sense numbers would fall after the build up for that historic vote in 2010, but says other factors have played a part.

"For example the division among the pro-democracy MPs and so on, which has actually been reflected in a couple of people not standing for re-election and also I think politics especially has not been given a good run because of those issues."

Prime Minister's office, Tonga

Prime Minister's office, Tonga Photo: Supplied