28 Sep 2017

Pohiva says Tongan King should be ceremonial figure only

2:38 pm on 28 September 2017

Tonga's caretaker prime minister, 'Akilisi Pohiva, says the king should only be a ceremonial figure.

Tonga's King Tupou VI

Tonga's King Tupou VI Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Indira Stewart

Mr Pohiva was speaking after the removal of his government and the calling of new elections over allegations he had been seeking to reduce the authority of King Tupou VI.

But he said power should rest with those elected by the people.

Radio Tonga reported him saying Tongans should learn from historical events and the path the world is taking.

Tonga's caretaker PM 'Akilisi Pohiva

Tonga's caretaker PM 'Akilisi Pohiva Photo: RNZI/Monica Miller

The Prime Minister said the most important principle to be upheld is accountability, with the executive accounting to each other as well as the people who elected them.

He said through this transparent relationship those who abuse powers should be sacked.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs