Commonwealth observers

Tonga's elections conducted professionally, Commonwealth

The country went to the polls last week a year earlier than scheduled after the King dissolved parliament in September.

But Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva's Democratic Party won a resounding victory in the peoples' electorates, with 14 candidates - including two women - winning seats.

The observer group's chair, Margaret Wilson, said the election was conducted thoroughly by officials and the results reflected the wishes of the people.

Former NZ Attorney General to lead Tonga election observer group

The team includes Nauru's Electoral Commissioner Joseph Cain, Fiji's Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem and a human rights lawyer from Swaziland Lomcebo Dlamini.

RNZI reports the Commonwealth Observer Group will be in Tonga from today until 20 November.

The election is being held next Thursday.

Official observers from the Pacific Islands Forum and the US Embassy in Suva will also be watching the election.