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Internal affairs, infrastructure ministries to absorb other functions

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Feb. 14, 2012) – The government in Tonga is creating two new ministries.

An internal affairs ministry and an infrastructure ministry will be formed as part of a process of government structural reform which involves reducing the 26 ministries into 13.

The Deputy Secretary of the Prime Minister’s office, Alfred Soakai, says the government is aiming to provide more efficient services by combining civil aviation, transport and works under one portfolio and creating a new internal affairs ministry.

"It makes better sense to have one dedicated ministry for the internal matters of the kingdom and the foreign affairs ministry to deal with the foreign aspect of our business. Government has tried this since probably the mid-1990s and I think finally there is the political will to make this happen."

Alfred Soakai says the new ministries will be operational from July the first.

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