Government, Games Council and TASANOC will go before Supreme Court on November 1

'Oku taupotu 'i lalo ha fakamatala faka-Tonga

The Tongan government has been allowed to make a late response to the legal suit brought against it by the Pacific Games Council.

Our correspondent in Tonga says the parties will now go before the Supreme Court in Nuku’alofa on November 1 for a hearing before Chief Justice Owen Paulsen.

As Kaniva News reported earlier this month, the Council and the kingdom’s Olympics Committee are suing the government over its decision to withdraw from hosting the 2019 Pacific Games.

According to the writ of summons issued at the Nuku’alofa Supreme Court on May 15, TASANOC has sought damages of TP$2,612,256,59 (NZ$1,745,619.60) while the PGC wants TP$5,841,924.40. (NZ$3,911,764.22).

The government’s lawyer, Dr Rodney Harrison, successfully appealed to the court to allow the late submission after the government missed the May deadline.

The Pacific Games Council and Tonga’s Olympic Committee applied for a default judgement in their favour after the government missed various deadlines to respond to the action.

Radio New Zealand has reported that the Council withdrew its application and was given a month to answer a government challenge to have the Olympic Committee removed as a plaintiff.

The head of the 2019 Pacific Games Organising Committee, Lord Sevele, has argued that only TASANOC committee had the right to cancel hosting the Games.

The government of Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pohiva has argued that the contract for Tonga to host the Games was signed between the Tongan government and the Pacific Games council, not the organising committee

As we reported at the time, Hon. Pōhiva said he decided to withdraw from hosting the Games on the grounds of costs, even though fund raising taxes and guarantees of outside financial help were in place.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister’s office has denied reports in local media that the Supreme Court had already ruled in favour of the Games Council.

Talaki  newspaper reported that the court had ordered the government to pay TP$8 million compensation.

For more information

Pacific Games case against Tonga progresses

Sometimes when a business is growing, it needs a little help.

Right now Kaniva News provides a free, politically independent, bilingual news service for readers around the world that is absolutely unique. We are the largest New Zealand-based Tongan news service, and our stories reach Tongans  wherever they are round the world. But as we grow, there are increased demands on Kaniva News for translation into Tongan on our social media accounts and for the costs associated with expansion. We believe it is important for Tongans to have their own voice and for Tongans to preserve their language, customs and heritage. That is something to which we are strongly committed. That’s why we are asking you to consider sponsoring our work and helping to preserve a uniquely Tongan point of view for our readers and listeners.

Latest news

Related news