TONGA’S ASSEMBLY APPROVES APPROPRIATION BILLS

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TONGA’S ASSEMBLY APPROVES APPROPRIATION BILLS

By Katalina Uili Tohi Special to the Pacific Islands Report

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (June 1, 2000 – Radio Tonga)---The Legislative Assembly has approved 11 supplementary appropriation bills totaling 2.7 million Pa‘anga (US$ 1.536 million).

The Ministry of Education will receive 746,000 Pa‘anga (US$ 424,467) with the bulk of this amount to be paid as Tonga's subscription to the University of the South Pacific.

Four-hundred-and-fifty-thousand Pa‘anga (US$ 256,046) will go for civil pensions, and another 400,000 Pa‘anga (US$ 227,596) will go to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Prime Minister's Office will receive 200,000 Pa‘anga (US$ 113,798), 150,000 Pa‘anga for the Legislative Assembly, and 100,000 Pa‘anga (US$ 56,899) for the Palace Office.

Other recipients of about 100,000 Pa‘anga (US$ 56,899) each are the Ministries of Police, Health, Works, Defense Services and the Post Office.

Speaker of the House Hon. Veikune said he's pleased with the decision of the members to approve all 11 bills after two days of deliberations.

Allocations under the appropriation cover various expenditures of each ministry and department during the final months of the current financial year 1999/2000.

The House has been adjourned until next Tuesday while members study the new budget estimates for the new financial year 2000/2001.

Hon. Veikune said the Minister of Finance is expected to present his budget statement to the House next Tuesday.

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