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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center

With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Further Review Sought Over Reconstruction Loan In Tonga
Former PM, former minister call for judicial probe

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Dec. 19, 2012) – Tonga’s former prime minister, Lord Feleti Sevele, and a former transport minister, Paul Karalus, are seeking a judicial review of a parliamentary select committee report on how a Chinese loan for the rebuild of Nuku’alofa was spent.

The former politicians say the report contains unwarranted criticism of them and they want the Supreme Court to strike out parts of it.

The committee, headed by the leading opposition MPs, Akilisi Pohiva and Dr. Sitiveni Halapua, was to look at such aspects such as how the loan was applied and the practices of the Nuku’alofa Development Corporation which was overseeing the rebuild.

But Lord Sevele and Mr. Karalus say the committee strayed from its terms of reference and its report has seriously damaged their reputations.

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