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Government to amend Clause 109 of the Constitution to legalize settlement along the Fanga’uta lagoon

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 27/01/2017

Benefits gained from the construction of the recreational park in Haveluloto exceed any impact on cutting mangroves along the Fanga’uta lagoon.

When it comes to human lives compared to the mangroves –human lives is priority.

The Government Geologist – Taniela Kula says we cannot compare mangroves to human lives because our lives are more important than material things.

He told Radio and Television News the park in Havelu was constructed with the initiative to prioritize human lives – through clearing of sidewalk for pedestrians. The mangroves already destroyed in the area are small to make a significant negative impact.

This is because the aim of the work is for the benefit of the general public.

Also participating in the televised and radio program was the  Prime Minister, Hon. ‘Akilisi Pohiva who said, Clause 109 of Tonga’s constitution relating to cutting of mangroves has been violated during  the past 30 years.

This was done by people who have cut down mangroves in the lagoon mainly for settlement and other purposes.

We then have to consider what is more important -THE MANGROVES OR SETTLEMENT OF PEOPLE.

However the program was conducted to clear the issue after several concerns were raised during Radio Tonga’s talk back in which many raise concern over allegations that authorities violation laws.

During the program the Prime Minister clarified the reasons why coconut trees along Vuna road in Popua were cut down.

He said this was to enable setting up of walkways for pedestrians.

This came after a decision to move the road to enable walkways for pedestrians, however they eventually decided not to shift the position of the road, but to cut down the coconut trees. Currently they are working on replanting coconut trees in the area.

© Radio and Television Tonga News