Justice Minister: Approval of international conventions in “complete chaos”

ʻOku ʻi he ngataʻanga ʻo e ongoongo fakapālangí ʻa e fakamatala tatau ʻi he lea faka-Tongá

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Minister of Justice Hon. Vuna Fāʻotusia. Photo/Fale Alea o Tonga

The process of approving international conventions was in “complete chaos,” Tonga’s Minister of Justice said yesterday.

Hon. Sione Vuna Fa’otusia said  some agreements were being signed by ministers then later taken to the king to sign. Other processes involved His Majesty from the beginning

He said the situation had caused the government to suggest amending the constitution so that the executive arm of government was involved from the beginning before recommending the king ratify them.

The PACER Plus agreement had yet to be ratified because the government was still working on the terms of the agreement to see that the country benefitted from it.

“Can you imagine how inconsiderate and insensitive of us it is to get the king involved in the process of signing an agreement from the beginning to the end?” the Minister said.

The Member for Tongatapu 7 said seriously considering all the pros and cons of an agreement before ratification was purely in the domain of the executive government.

“The government of the day should consider it seriously before approaching the king for ratification or otherwise.

“We moved to amend the constitution so that the king ratify it on the recommendation of cabinet.

“What is wrong with such a considered process before involving the king?”

The Minister said the king’s decision to dissolve the house on the advice of the Speaker came after Cabinet had prepared to submit draft legislation to amend the constitution.

The main points

  • The process of approving international conventions was in “complete chaos,” Tonga’s Minister of justice said yesterday.
  • Sione Vuna Fa’otusia said some agreements were being signed by ministers then later taken to the king to sign. Other processes involved His Majesty from the beginning
  • He said the government had suggest amending the constitution so that the executive arm of government was involved from the beginning before recommending the king ratify them.
  • The Minister said the king’s decision to dissolve the house on the advice of the Speaker came after Cabinet had prepared to submit draft legislation to amend the constitution.

For more information 

Speaker has no power to advise king to dissolve Parliament says Justice Minister

Pacer Plus signing followed Budapest convention signing process, Deputy PM says

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  1. Ko e ngāue ki hono tali ʻo e ngaahi konivēsio fakavahaʻapuleʻangá naʻe mātuʻaki ʻikai ke maau, ko e fakamatala ia ʻa e Minisitā Laó.

    Naʻe pehē ʻe ʻOnapolo Sione Vuna Fāʻotusia ko e ngaahi aleapau ʻe niʻihi naʻe fakamoʻoniʻi pe ia ʻe he kau minisitaá pea toki ʻave ki he tuʻí ke fakamoʻoni aofangatuku. Ne ʻi ai e ngaahi aleapau kehe ia ne pau ke kau pe tuʻí mei he kamataʻanga hono aleaʻí ki heʻene ʻosi.

    Naʻá ne pehē naʻe hanga ʻe he tuʻunga ko ʻení ʻo kouna e puleʻangá ke fokotuʻu ke liliu ʻa e konisitūtoné kae lava ke fai kotoa ʻe he vaʻa fakahoko ngāue ʻa e puleʻangá ʻa e ngāue ki ha talite pe konivēsio mei he kamataʻangá ki muʻa pea nau fokotuʻu atu ki he tuʻí ke tali.

    Ko e aleapau PACER Plus ʻoku teʻeki ke fakamoʻoni ki ai ʻa e tuʻí koeʻuhī he ne kei ngāue ʻa e puleʻangá ki he ngaahi teemi ʻo e aleapaú ke vakaiʻi e monū ʻe maʻu mei ai ʻe he fonuá.

    “ʻOku lava ke ke sio ki heʻetau taʻefakaʻatuʻi mo taʻemālūʻia hono fakakau mai e tuʻí ki he ngāue ki hono fakamoʻoniʻi ʻo ha aleapau mei he kamataʻangá ki heʻene ʻosí?”, ko e minisitaá ia.

    Naʻe pehē ʻe Fāʻotusiá, ʻa ia ko e Fakafofonga Fale Alea foki ia maʻa Tongatapu 7 ko hono fakakaukauʻi ko ia ʻo e lelei mo e kovi ʻo ha aleapau ki muʻa pea fakamoʻoniʻi aofangatukú ko e ngafa ia ʻo e vaʻa fakahoko ngāue ʻa e puleʻangá

    Naʻa mau fokotuʻu ke liliu ʻa e konisitūtoné ke fakamoʻoni ʻa e tuʻí ʻi hano fokotuʻu atu ʻe he kapinetí, ko e minisitaá ia.

    Naʻe pehē ʻe he minisitaá ko e tuʻutuʻuni ʻa e tuʻí ke veteki ʻa e Fale Aleá ko e faleʻi ʻa e Sea ʻo e Fale Aleá hili ia hano teuteuʻi ʻe he kapinetí ke fakahū atu ha lao fakaangaanga ke liliu ʻa e konisitūtoné.