TONGA LAWMAKERS SEEK ‘FAREWELL PAYMENT’

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Some ask prime minister for bonus

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 30, 2010) – Tonga MPs are considering giving themselves a farewell payment ahead of the new elections in November.

The Matangi Tonga website reports that the Niua People’s Representative, Sione Feingatau ’Iloa, pleaded with the Prime Minister, Dr Feleti Sevele, to give the MPs a blanket to keep themselves warm.

He told Parliament he’s made the request because it’s not certain the MPs would win re-election in November.

Earlier the Speaker, the Noble Tu’ilakepa, had also raised the question of a farewell payment.

But other MPs have objected, saying such a payment is inappropriate.

Dr Sevele told Parliament that a financial update on the state of the Tongan economy is due in August and that would enable them to make a decision on the payment request.

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