19 Feb 2019

Multiple petitions call for dissolution of Tonga Parliament

11:55 am on 19 February 2019

Three petitions with over 10,000 signatures calling for the King of Tonga to dissolve Parliament and launch an investigation into the government have been presented to the palace in Nuku'alofa.

Tonga's King Tupou VI

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

Matangi Tonga reported the petitions, presented on Monday, come alongside claims there were no checks and balances and corruption existed in government.

A former government minister Clive Edwards presented a petition signed by former politicians.

Noble MP Lord Nuku presented a petition from the country's nobles.

The third petition was presented by former MP Teisina Fuko from members of the general public.

Clive Edwards said he believed that once a Royal Commission for Investigation was appointed, a caretaker government would need to be put in place.

Teisina Fuko said a fourth petition from another sector of society was expected to be presented today.

He said there was pressure for a major public demonstration to present the petitions, but they decided it was best to avoid possible confrontations with government supporters

In August 2017 King Tupou VI dissolved parliament which resulted in new elections being held the same year.

In June 2018, a 3,000-strong signature petition to impeach the prime minister and seven of his cabinet ministers was submitted to parliament.

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