30 Dec 2014

Call for new Tongan PM to appoint woman to cabinet

3:33 pm on 30 December 2014

A women's rights and welfare advocate in Tonga is calling on the new Prime Minister to appoint a woman to cabinet from outside of parliament.

The Director of the Women and Children's Crisis Centre Ofa Guttenbeil-Likiliki is hoping to collect 2,000 signatures on a petition which will be presented to 'Akilisi Pohiva tomorrow. (WEDS)

In the past Mr Pohiva has spoken out against the giving of cabinet positions to people outside the 26 elected representatives in parliament.

But Ms Guttenbeil-Likiliki says the petition asks that the Prime Minister reassess his views.

"For him to look at the bigger picture in terms of Tonga having no women in parliament and to consider appointing a woman to a ministerial portfolio so at least we have one woman in parliament or even two. The Prime Minister has an allocation of four external appointments so we are crossing our fingers and hoping."

16 women stood unsuccessfully in the November election.