7 Feb 2017

Tongan fruit pickers in NZ sent home for misbehaving

8:01 pm on 7 February 2017

Eight Tongan fruit pickers in New Zealand were ordered to return home last Friday for alleged misbehaviour.

The chief executive of Tonga's Internal Affairs ministry, 'Ana Bing Fonua, said the young men were accused of drinking alcohol, causing violence and being unable to carry out their tasks.

Radio Tonga reports the pickers were warned about their behaviour and, when there was no change, they were sent back to Tonga.

Ms Bing Fonua said the men were immature.

One of the pickers denied the allegations and said they worked hard and were not responsible for any violent incidents.

He blamed his supervisor for distributing false information.

The men came from Tofoa, Ha'apai. The town officer there, 'Usaia Fifita, said they had ruined the reputation of Tofoa and its people.