Pohiva slams state media bias

Tonga Democratic Party, ‘Akilisi Pohiva says the government is manipulating state media to deny his party access.

With further delays into the Democrats’ efforts to hold a vote of no confidence in the administration of Lord Tu’ivakano.

But this move comes with no surprise as ‘Akilisi signalled over 18 months ago that his party will move a no confidence motion on the government as it stated under the new constitution.

Parliament has been adjourned until Monday when petitions from public groups opposed to the motion will be heard.

One of the petitions criticises the Democrats for trying to unseat the government without explaining why, but Mr Pohiva says his party has not been given any opportunity to put its case on local state television and radio.

He says it is like being in a police state Radio New Zealand International (RNZI) reported.

“A good example is Radio Tonga and Television Tonga are being used by government to support the reaction or opposition from government. We representatives of the people are not given a chance to present or to challenge motions and also petitions launched by ministers and also some of the nobles.”

But the general manager of Radio Tonga, Nanise Fifita, has dismissed claims by the opposition leader, Akilisi Pohiva, that his Democratic Party is being denied access to state media.

Ms Fifita told RNZI that there is no basis to the allegation.

She says the Democrats have had a lot of exposure and they were only denied on one occasion this week because they discussed the content of a public petition that is yet to be tabled in Parliament.

“They are talking about a document but they kept on referring to the petition and the content of the petition submitted to the Office of the Legislative Assembly about two days ago. That petition is yet to be ready out officially read out in the House, submitted to the House and read out publicly.”


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