Tongans set to shoulder cost of Pacific Games

Dr Ngongo Kioa says that while the levy will be paid by the banks, the cost will likely be passed on to the people.

Radio Tonga News understands the 'Foreign Exchange Levy Bill' was passed in Parliament, but was returned back from the Privy Council after a complaint from the Tonga Chamber of Commerce.

Questions have been raised over the lack of public consultation and NGOs have voiced concern over how the levy will affect people at the grassroots level.

Tonga to host 2019 Pacific Games

In a special Cabinet meeting on Monday 27 July 2015, a decision was made to go ahead with the hosting of the Games. Sports Organizing Committee leaders also met with Government officials to discuss details of the Games.

The main concern has been the lack of funding for the needed infrastructural construction of facilities and the provision of equipment for the Games.

Doubt was cast on whether Tonga will go ahead with stated of the Games when the Prime Minister had earlier given media interviews that the financial position of the country was not adequate to host the Games.

Samoa to face Fiji in Pacific Nations Cup final after semi-final drama

The Samoans looked to be slipping to a surprise defeat after Canada's Sale Sharks wing Phil Mackenzie raced over for an opportunistic converted try to put the home side 20-16 up with four minutes left.

But Samoa punished a needlessly conceded penalty by setting up a line-out on Canada's goal-line with just seconds left.

And when Canada knocked on from the set-piece, Sakaria Taulafo was on hand to touch down for the winning score.

Canada had raced into a 13-0 lead through a try from centre Nick Blevins and eight points from the boot of full-back James Pritchard.

Pacific Prosecutors to meet in Tonga

The annual meeting of heads of prosecuting agencies from around the Pacific will deliberate under a theme ‘Pacific Prosecutions and Good Governance: Independence, Accountability and Transparency’.

‘Aminiasi Kefu the Acting Attorney General and Director of Public Prosecutors said the theme is based on good governance because one of the aims of PPA is to promote and protect the independence of prosecutors from improper influences from whatever source, including but not limited to political interference.

Tonga rugby team overwhelms USA

Both teams came in to the match with one win and one loss and were playing for points towards the finals series.

The 'Ikale Tahi were also looking to repeat the result of last years match against the USA Eagles in Kingsholm.

Tonga put the pressure on early and never let up throughout the game.

Both wings got in on the scoring action with Fetu'u Vainikolo bagging a double and Telusa Veainu getting over the line.

Impressive kicking from first-five Kurt Morath also led the way towards their 33-19 victory.

“People of the canoe” issue new climate declaration

“The Pacific Ocean is a vital regulator of climate for the whole world and needs a voice.  We, the Polynesian Leaders Group, are the voice for the Pacific Ocean, and wish to carry our strategic vision to deal with the adverse effects of climate change by limiting global warming below 1.5 (degrees Celsius) and having access to tools and means to adapt to the adverse impacts caused by climate change.”

Three Tongans seminarians sent back home

The students at the Roman Catholic Pacific Regional Seminary were sent home at the end of the last semester.

This is the second time in two years that three Tongan seminarians have been sent home.

Sources close to the Catholic Diocese of Tonga say that the head of the church in the kingdom, Cardinal Soane Patita Paini Mafi, has been upset by the incident.

“He has called for an immediate review of preparations for candidates to the priesthood in the light of what has happened,” the source said.

Tonga not adequately resourced to respond to a tsunami

And, Tonga’s Director of Meteorology, Ofa Fa’anunu told the plenary at the Third Pacific Meteorological Council currently in session in Tonga that, “if an earthquake happens now in the Tongan Trench, it would take 15 to 20 minutes to arrive”.

New toolkit helps projects to end violence against women and girls

“It is a problem that affects all of our communities and our countries,” the Australian High Commissioner Brett Aldam said in launching a new information resource for women in Nuku’alofa on Saturday July 25.

A new toolkit, titled “How to design projects to end violence against women and girls”, is the first of its kind in the Pacific. It was developed by UN Women through its Pacific Regional Ending Violence against Women Facility Fund (Pacific Fund), with funding from the Australian Government.

Island nations ring changes for final round PNC match-ups

Manu Samoa coach Stephen Betham has made six changes to his starting side to face Canada in Toronto.

Viliamu Afatia, Iosefa Tekori and Faifili Levave get a start in the pack with local lad Faialaga Afamasaga getting a chance in the number 12 jersey.

The other two changes from the team that drew with Fiji is the return of Sinoti Sinoti and Ah See Tuala out wide.

Stephen Betham says this is the coaching team's final opportunity to test combinations and to give some players more game time.