Tonga PM

Tonga PM raises tertiary fee issue with NZ govt

Hu'akavameiliku noted his concerns when he met with New Zealand's Education Minister Jan Tinetti at the inaugural Conference of Pacific Education Ministers (PEM) held in Auckland last week.

This is not the first time the issue has been brought up by the Tongan leader.

Earlier this year, he told media that he has reservations around tertiary fees with the New Zealand high commissioner.

But now he has escalated the matter to the leaders' level.

Tonga PM overwhelmed with Fijian reception ahead of PIF Special Leaders Retreat

Hu’akavameiliku is in Fiji to attend the Pacific Islands Forum Special Leaders Retreat on Friday.

The Tonga PM posted on his official Twitter account and said “Happy to arrive in #Fiji safely and Honored to be received by Guard of Honor at #NadiAirport.”

He is accompanied by the Chief Secretary, Paula Ma’u     

Tonga PM praises national netball team

Sovaleni alongside Minister of Foreign Affairs Fekitamoeloa ‘Utoikamanu were present at the naming of the squad last Friday.

In his address, the Tonga PM said “Thank you for your service to the country.”

Being the only female in Cabinet, ‘Utoikamanu reflected on her school years having played netball noting the game has changed over the years .

On behalf of His Majesty’s Government, she told the ladies “you have a whole nation’s prayers and support behind you.”

Pacific leaders pay tribute to ex-Japanese PM

Tonga's Prime Minister Hu'akavameiliku Siaosi Sovaleni issued a statement on Tuesday morning praising Mr Abe as a rare leader who took personal interest in strengthening relations between the countries.

Fiji's Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama called Mr Abe a true friend to Fiji and a model for every leader.

Papua New Guinea's caretaker Prime Minister James Marape credited him for initiating numerous development projects in PNG.

And New Zealand's PM Jacinda Ardern described Mr Abe as a kind man who helped usher through many complex negotiations.

'We are the Pacific ocean' says Tonga's PM in Palau

Hu'akavameiliku Siaosi Sovaleni told 500 delegates from more than 80 nations "that we are small island communities with small economies and capacities and managing our ocean alone."

The prime minister quoted renowned Pacific academic and ocean champion, the late Epeli Hauʻofa:

'Oceania is vast, Oceania is expanding, Oceania is hospitable and generous, Oceania is humanity rising from the depths of brine and regions of fire deeper still, Oceania is us.'

Tonga's PM confirms Covid-19 variant in Kingdom is Omicron

At a press conference this morning in Nuku'alofa, Prime Minister Hu'akavameiliku Siaosi Sovaleni said the Omicron variant was identified after samples were sent to Australia.

He announced that there were now a total of 65 covid cases in Tonga and that it had spread to the island of Vava'u where 1 case was confirmed at the village of Mataika.


'Resilience and strength of people' will get Kingdom through, Tonga's PM

Earlier today, the prime minister together with Minister of Health Saia Piukala said that one of the first two reported cases has since tested negative - but he remains in isolation at Taliai Military Camp awaiting further tests.

The total number of positive covid cases in Tonga now stands at four - down from five originally announced yesterday.

Tonga remains in lockdown with all shops closed and people ordered to stay home.

Work is underway to establish the source of the infections and identify which variant it is.

Tonga elects new PM: Siaosi Sovaleni

Sovaleni is the interim education minister, and is a former deputy prime minister.

He was the favourite to win the prime minister's seat, with a convincing lead emerging in recent days, and secured 16 out of 26 votes in the Legislative Assembly.

Sovaleni's election represents a change of government for the kingdom as his only rival candidate, 'Aisake Eke, had the backing of the former prime minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa.

Tonga's PM to let law take course over cabinet minister

The Infrastructure Minister, 'Akosita Lavulavu, with her husband, 'Etuate Lavulavu - a former cabinet minister, have been charged with fraud over land they quarried in Vava'u four years ago.

When asked by the website Kaniva Tonga whether he would sack the minister, the prime minister said "Let the law rule."

The opposition leader Sēmisi Sika has said Lavulavu should resign if found guilty.


PM to meet Tongan community in Auckland

The meeting is scheduled to be held on Monday 16 November, when the Prime Minister is in New Zealand on his way back to Tonga after a meeting in Europe.

The event will be held at the hall of the United Church of Tonga Taufa’ahau Tupou IV, 2 Gray Avenue, Mangere East at 7 – 8.30 pm, a Tongan Church and Faith-based Leadership Network spokesperson told Kaniva News.

The Network said it wished to invite all members of the Tongan community to the meeting.  

It was an “important opportunity” for the community, it said.