Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pōhiva said today the king had ordered that the petitions against his government should be investigated by an office that did not exist.
Hon. Pōhiva said the king had ordered the petition should be sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions, but that the office did not exit.
“The Bill to amend the Constitution so that the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions can be established is one of those six Bills that I had submitted to the Legislative Assembly to be treated as urgent,” the Prime Minister said.
“It is unfortunate that its passage has been held up due to differences in interpretation of the Rules of Procedure of the Legislative Assembly.”
The Prime Minister said the king’ decision because it implied the petitioner’s call for Parliament to be dissolved had not been approved.
It also implied that approval had not been given to calls for the establishment of a commission of inquiry and an interim government to organise new elections.
“I totally support His Majesty in Council’s decision to instead to refer the petitions to the Ombudsman, the Attorney General and the Commissioner of Police for investigation.
“In my public response to the petitions that was issued on February 22 I acknowledged the Petitioner’s constitutional right to petition His Majesty,” the Prime Minister said.
“However, I called on them to first submit their allegations to the offices of the Ombudsman, the Attorney General and the Police to first investigate.
“I also suggested that they should also submit their allegations of misuse of public finances and resources to the office of the Auditor General.”
Hon. Pōhiva said he would make a submission to Cabinet as soon as possible regarding the king’s directive that the government pay for the Anti- Corruption Commission.
As Kaniva Tonga news reported earlier, three petitions with more than 10,000 signatures were presented to the palace in Nuku’alofa.
Former government minister Clive Edwards, who presented a petition signed by former politicians, said he believed that once a Royal Commission for Investigation was appointed, a caretaker government should be put in place.
The main points
- Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pōhiva said today the king had ordered that the petitions against his government should be investigated by an office that did not exist.
- Hon. Pohiva said the king had ordered the petition should be sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions, but that the office did not exit.
For more information
King orders petitions from government’s enemies to be referred to Ombudsman