14 July 2020 King Tupou VI and his Privy Council are set to appoint the Secretary of Foreign Affairs after the Bill passed in Parliament by the majority of the Parliament members.

The Bill was introduced to Parliament by the Prime Minister and his Government with the idea that the Secretary of Foreign Affairs should be aligned with the clause 39 and 40 of the Constitution.

After the third reading reading of the bill in parliament, it is now called an Act of Parliament waiting for the Royal ascent of the King.

Constitution of Tonga

39 Treaties

“It shall be lawful for the King to make treaties with Foreign States provided that such treaties shall be in accordance with the laws of the Kingdom. The King may appoint his representatives to other nations according to the custom of nations.”

40 Foreign ministers

“The King shall receive Foreign Ministers and may address the Legislative Assembly in writing regarding the affairs of the Kingdom and matters which he may wish to bring before the Assembly for deliberation.”

MP Siaosi Pohiva of Tongatapu 2 argued that the CEO of Foreign Affairs is one of the executive powers and it is essential to ensure that the CEO or Secretary of Foreign Affairs should be accountable for the people of Tonga, and that is the purpose of the 2010 political reform.

Siaosi Pohiva believed that to accept this bill is a set back from the 2010 political reform that returned back the executive power to the people. The returning back of the executive power to be accountable for the King rather than the people is a major setback to our democracy reform.

The Speaker of the House, Lord Fakafanua, correct the statement from Hon Pohiva by saying that in 2010, King Tupou V gave away voluntarily some of his executive power to the people rather than what Hon Pohiva said that in 2010, the executive power was returning back to the people.

The Associate Minister of Law Hon Samiu Vaipulu stated in parliament that the role of the Secretary of Foreign Affairs should be aligned with clause 39 of the Constitution. Tonga’s political system is under the King, constitution, and the people, and therefore the accountability for the people and the King will always be there.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Dr Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa told parliament that this is a very good bill itself particularly in transparent with the constitution and the operation of the foreign affairs.

Parliament members should not give a wrong impression about this bill by saying that this bill will not allow people to involve in the executive powers and running of the government. The people currently have the executive power but that does not mean that the people are having the power to control everything here in Tonga.

2010 Political Reform:

It is not unusual for the Secretary of Foreign Affairs not to be appointed by the Public Service Commission (PSC) because there were other CEOs rank that were not appointed by the PSC.

For instance, the Police Commissioner and the Attorney General are currently appointed by the King at his Privy Council. The Auditor General is under the authority of the Legislative Assembly.

Thus, the changing of the Secretary of Foreign Affairs should make it easier for the King who have the authority and constitutional power to conduct treaties with overseas countries to operate.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has the responsibility of promoting and protecting Tonga’s and its citizens’ interests overseas and provide the Government with advice on foreign affairs, trade, and development policies.

Through its diplomatic missions abroad it seeks to enhance Tonga’s security and prosperity by promoting political, economic, and social relations between Tonga and the rest of the World.

‘Amanaki ke fakamo’oni Huafa ‘a ‘Ene ‘Afio koe Tu’i ‘o Tonga ‘i he Lao ki hono fakamafai’i ‘a ‘Ene ‘Afio kene fakanofo ‘a e Sekeli Lahi ki he Potungaue ki Muli. Koe Lao fakaangaanga foki ‘eni na’e fakahu ‘e he Palemia moe Pule’anga ke fakafaingofua’i ‘a e fengaue’aki ‘a e Potungaue ki Muli pea moe Tu’i ‘aia ‘oku ‘iai e mafai fakakonisitutone kene fakanofo e kau ‘Amipasitoa ‘o Tonga ki tu’apule’anga pehe ki he mafai koia ki he Tu’i he kupu 39 ‘o e konisitutone kene fakahoko ‘a e ngaahi talite moe ngaahi fonua ‘i tu’apule’anga.

39 Ngaahi Talite

“‘E ngofua ki he Tu‘i ke fai ‘a e ngaahi talite mo e ngaahi Pule‘anga Muli ka ‘oku ‘ikai ngofua ke ne fai ‘a e ngaahi talite ‘oku fai kehe mo e ngaahi lao ‘o e Pule‘anga ni. ‘Oku ngofua ki he Tu‘i ke fakanofo ‘ene kau fakafofonga ki he ngaahi pule‘anga ‘o hange koe ngaahi anga ‘o e ngaahi Pule’anga.”

40 Kau Minisita mei muli

“‘E tali ‘e he Tu‘i ‘a e kau Fakafofonga (Foreign Ministers) ‘o e ngaahi Pule‘anga pea ‘oku ngofua kiate ia ke folofola ki he Fale Alea ‘aki ‘ene tohi ‘a e ngaahi me‘a ‘oku kau ki he Pule‘anga pea mo e ngaahi me‘a ‘oku finangalo ke nau tokanga mo alea ki ai.”

Na’e fakamalanga foki ‘a e fakafofonga Tongatapu 1 Siaosi Pohiva ‘i Falealea ‘o pehe, koe CEO koia ‘o e Potungaue ki Muli koe taha ia e ngaahi mafai fakalele pule’anga ‘eni na’e fakafoki ki he kakai he liliu fakapolitikale 2010 pea na’e fakataumu’a e liliu fakapolitikale koia ke taliui e kau ma’u mafai pehe ni ki he kakai e fonua. Ka koe liliu lao ia ko ‘eni koe toe holomui ia kimui mei he fakalelei fakapolitikale.

Na’e fakatonutonu ‘e Lord Fakafanua e Fakafofonga Tongatapu 1 ‘o pehe koe liliu fakapolitikale ko ‘eni he 2010 na’e foaki ‘e Tupou V hono mafai ko ‘eni ki he kakai ka ‘oku ‘ikai ko ha fakafoki e mafai ki he kakai ‘o hange na’e ‘uluaki ‘i he kakai pe mafai ia koia.

Na’e fakaha foki ‘e he Minisita Lao le’ole’o Hon Samiu Vaipulu, na’e makatu’unga e liliu lao ko ‘eni he fakakaukau ke fenapasi mo taliui e lakanga Sekelitali lahi Potungaue ki Muli ki he kupu 39 moe 40 ‘o e konisitutone. ‘Aia ‘oku ne fakamafai’i e Tu’i koia ‘oku ne fakahoko ‘a e ngaahi Talite mo e ngaahi fonua muli pehe ki he va fakatipilometika o Tonga ni moe ngaahi fonua muli. ‘Aia koe fa’unga ‘o e fonua ni koe Tu’i pea moe kakai pea ‘oku ‘osi ‘iai e fetaliui’aki ia ai.

Na’e me’a foki e Palemia Hon Dr Pohiva Tu’i’onetoa, koe lao lelei ‘eniu pea ‘oku fenapasi lelei pe mo ‘etau konisitutone. ‘Oku mahu’inga ke ‘oua e takihala’i he ni’ihi kau memipa e Falealea e kakai ‘o pehe ‘oku ‘ikai ke fetaliui’aki heni e kau ma’u mafai moe kakai. ‘Oku lolotonga ‘i he kakai pe ngaahi mafai koia ka ‘oku ‘ikai ke ‘uhinga ia e pule pe kakai ia ki he me’a kotoa pe he ‘oku ‘iai hotau Tu’i moe kakai.

‘E kei ua ma’u pe ongo tafa’aki ‘i he meimei me’a kotoa ka ‘okapau ‘e fakamo’oni Huafa e Tu’i he Lao ni pea ko ‘ene hoko leva ia koe Lao ki he fonua pea kuo pau leva ke fili ‘e he Tu’i mo ‘ene Fakataha Tokoni e Sekelitali Pule ki he Potungaue ki Muli.

©VPON Media 2020