Distrust Surrounding Media And Tongan Gov Relations

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Media: gov lacks transparency and good governance

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, December 14, 2015) – The Chair of Tonga's Media Council says there is distrust surrounding the government's dealings with the media.

The Prime Minister's Office and Chief Secretary have come under fire for supposedly lacking transparency and good governance.

A number of media outlets have officially expressed concern about the lack of cooperation they receive from the office.

Pesi Fonua, who also runs the Matangi Tonga website, says although media relations have improved slightly compared to previous governments there are still issues.

"...but still the problem now is that they answer it but you can't rely on their answers. Whereas before there was just nothing coming out. Now there is something coming out from the office but you can't trust it."

Pesi Fonua says there have been a number of conflicting statements released by the Office and the Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva himself over the past year.

Mr Fonua says Mr Pohiva has promised to address the situation.

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