1 May 2020 Minister of Finance and Custom Hon Tevita Lavemaau hit back on social media and called the person or journalist that was tried to mislead the public with false information as an apprentice journalist that does not understand the paperwork or documents.

This complainant took it to social media and blamed the Government for lied to people, when they announced last month that the charge for duty and consumer tax (CT) for all essential goods for family has been lifted until the 30th of June 2020 due to COVID-19.

The headline of the claimed was written, “IT IS NOT TRUE THAT THE ESSENTIAL GOODS AT THE WHARF IS DUTY-FREE OF CHARGE”. In Tongan, it says, “IKAI MOONI HONO TUTE TAETOTONGI O E NGAAHI KOLOA MEAKAI I UAFU.”

The complainant(s) wrote that they went to pick up their drum (talamu) of essential foods that was sent from overseas. They were surprised when told to pay $350.74 pa’anga of duty plus other charges for a single drum of foods.

Hon Tevita Lavemaau replied that some people and journalist are so quick to spread incomplete information aiming to destroy the good work that this Government had put in place to help the people with free duty and CT during this time of COVID-19.

The Minister of Finance confirmed that the custom entry for this drum of foods was only charged $23.50 pa’anga. The rest of the charges belonged to Shipping Agent, Brokers and Wharf charges and the Government had no control of their services.

FAKAHA ‘EHE MINISITA PA’ANGA MO KASITOMU ‘OKU IKAI KE MO’ONI E TUKUAKI’I E POTUNGAUE TUTE KI HANO TUTE $350.74 ‘O HA TALAMU ME’AKAI

Kuo fakaha foki ‘e he Minisita Pa’anga moe Kasitomu Hon Tevita Lavemaau ‘oku ‘ikai ke mo’oni ‘a e tukuaki’i ‘oku tufaki he mitia sosiale fekau’aki mo ha launga ‘a ha taha ki hono tute ‘e ne talamu me’akai pa’anga $350.74

Na’e fehu’ia foki he ni’ihi ko ‘eni ‘a e ongoongo na’e fakaha ‘e he Pule’anga ‘i he mahina kuo ‘osi ‘aia na’a nau pehe ‘oku hokohoko atu ‘a hono ta’etute mo ‘ikai ha totongi CT ki ha uta koloa me’akai pe koloa faka’api (essential goods) ki he famili ‘o ngata ki he ‘aho 30 ‘o Sune 2020.

‘I he tukuaki’i na’e fakaha ai ‘e ha tokotaha na’a ne lava atu ki uafu ke totongi mai ‘a ‘ene fo’i talamu me’akai pea ‘ohovale ‘i hono ‘oatu kene totongi e tute $350.74 pehe ki he $50 na’e tanaki atu kiai, malini $6 moe totongi Broker $30.

Na’e fakaha ai ‘e Hon Tevita Lavemaau ‘o pehe, “…koe maumau’anga ia ‘a e kau faiongoongo koe fiema’u talanoa ke tukuhifo ai ha ngaue lelei kuo fakahoko ma’ae kakai koe ‘ikai ke ‘ave kakato ‘a e fakamatala pea fakapapau’i ‘oku mo’oni. ‘Oku mahino lelei ‘aupito ‘a e ‘ikai ke mahino ki he faiongoongo ‘a e ngaahi documents na’e ‘oatu kiai. Koe tute na’e totongi ‘o fakatatau moe custom entry koe pa’anga $23.50 pea koe fu’u tokoni lahi ‘eni ‘a e Pule’anga ‘aki hono to’o ‘a e tute moe tukuhau fakatau koe tokoni ki he COVID-19. Koe $$ ko ‘ena ‘e fiha ngeau koe totongi ia ki he kautaha vaka n Agent pea pehe ki he Custom Broker. ‘Oku ‘ikai ke pule’i ‘ehe Pule’anga ‘a e ngaahi kupu ngaue ko ‘eni pea pehe ki he mahu’inga e ngaahi sevesi ‘oku nau fakahoko…”

©Vavau Newshub Online 2020