Tonga's Parliamentary Elections: Who is in
Dear Famili, Malo ho'omou lelei.
Please allow me to give you all a quick update of our election results after yesterday. I cannot express enough the sheer excitement at where our island kingdom is heading, with the new democracy we're heading into . . . it feels like its gonna be a great Christmas indeed.
So as you may have recalled, us the people have 17 representatives to the new Tonga parliament, along with 9 others chosen from the nobles. Of the people's 17, 10 are from the main island of Tongatapu, 1 from Eua, 1 for the Niuas, 2 for Ha'apai and 3 for Vava'u. So I'll go one constituency at a time, but I'll be quick (trust me).
Constituency No.1 - Samuela Akilisi Pohiva
The district covers part of Kolomotu'a, Tongataeapa, Sopu, Hala'ovave and Longolongo. And of course, as predicted in previous polls, that Akilisi was going to win anyway, and so it was. Of the 2,650 that registered for this district, Akilisi took out 63% of those votes. Of his other competitors, the first runner up to Akilisi had just 21% of the votes and the rest were nowhere near. Many people think Akilisi could well become our new Prime Minister. But as humble as he is, he would leave the people to make that call, not him. And that's what we love about him.
Constituency No.2 - Semisi Sika
He is a local businessman, family man (I hope), community man and ally of Akilisi Pohiva in the People's Democratic Party. His distric covers Kolofo'ou, Fanga, Havelu, Tofoa & Koloua. Of the 2,240 registered voters, Sika took the lead with 38% of his district's voters. He had a close competition from our former Deputy PM, Dr.Viliami Tangi who had only 29% of the votes and former Minister of Justice, Alisi Taumoepeau with 14%. And the 6 other candidates, had to share the rest of the 20% remaining voters.
Constituency No.3 - Dr. Sitiveni Halapua
A member of the People's Democratic Party, along with Akilisi and Sika. This district covers part of Kolofo'ou, Pahu, Fasi, Ngele'ia, Mataika and part of Ma'ufanga. Halapua took out 38% of the 2,721 registered voters in the constituency No.3 area. His closes competitor was the former people's representatives William Clive Edward, who took out just 25% of the voters. The other 8 candidates who competed for this district's seat in parliament, took out small slices of the remaining 37% of the districts votes. Watch this Dr Halapua because there's rumor around that Akilisi may well prefer to have Dr Halapua as Tonga's new PM but negotiations are underway.
Constituency No.4 - Isileli Pulu
Pulu (a former taxi driver) and the proposed choice of Akilisi's People's Democratic Party took the seat with 58% of his district's 2,185 registered voters. This district runs from part of Ma'ufanga, Houmakelikao, Anana, Fangaloto, Popua and Patangata. His 6 other competitors includes the likes of Etuate Sakalia (former treasurer of Catholic Diocese of Tonga) with 9% , Ahongalu Fusimalohi (who's being banned by FIFA for fraud) with 10%, and the Tongan entertainer Tupou Loto'aniu with 3.4% were way behind.
Constituency No.5 - Aisake Valu Eke
As you all know, this is the Hihifo constituency that runs from Matafonua to Vaotu'u, then goes west covering Matahau as well as 'Atata. Of the proposed allies of Akilisi Pohiva in the Tongatapu area, Aisake became the one that beats the odd. You should know that Akilisi's team had suggested Siale Fihaki, the former district officer of Hihifo, but it seems indifferent with the Hihifo's choice. In fact, it was only in Matahau that Siale had the lead, by earning 33% of the 217 Matahau voters. When it came to the Nukunuku area, Aisake took the lead ahead of Nukunuku's very own citizen, Siale Fihaki and Hekisou Fifita. As old fashion as we are, some of our villages just went after their man. Like Fo'ui, 93% just voted for Maliu Takai. In Fahefa, 51% voted for Lopeti Senituli. Te'ekiu, 56% voted for Semisi Tongia and then Vaotu'u, Aisake just took out 97% of his village voters. In the end, of the 2,815 registed voters, Aisake had 24% with Maliu coming close with 22%. The rest of the other 11 candidates had to share the remaining 54%, which would average them with 4.9% each. From what I've seen, ko e ki'i kolo politiki mo'oni 'atautolu (Matahau) in support of 'Akilisi's party, as they put out 'Aisake in 4th place in their choice, but went with Akilisi's choice of Siale Fihaki. UNBELIEVABLE.
Constituency No.6 - Siosifa Tu'utafaiva
A local Tongan lawyer, Sifa came very close to losing the seat to Saia Moehau (a downtown businessman). Of the this district's 2,774 voters, Sifa had 26.5% of the votes and Saia took out 26.3%. This is a sad loss for the downtown business guy who had contributed motorcycles to the village communities in his district which covers Fatai, Lakepa, Sia'atoutai, Liahona, Houma, Ha'alao, 'Utulau and Lomaiviti, but a sweet victory for Akilisi's Democratic Party who vouched for Sifa. You should also know that it was these two candidate's female supporters who were summoned to the Nukunuku Police Station, last Thursday for fighting in public.
Constituency No.7 - Sangster Saulala
Fat boy with a BIG mouth, Sengi who is favoured by Akilisi Pohiva's Party, managed to take the seat from two of Ha'ateiho's proud citizens, Masaso Paunga and Vuna Fa'otusia. These three guys' votes were pretty tight, until they came to Tofoa, with Sengi's Tokaikolo church back up, I mean . . . the guy just literally took the lead from then on, and the race was over. Sengi had 33% of the 2,600 registered voters with Masaso 24% and Vuna with 16.5%. Sengi then this morning in making his victory speech said he would like to be Minister of Youth & Sports . . .Malo.
Constituency No.8 - Sione Taione (Go Vaini)
A current registrar of the magistrate office, and the Democratic Party's elected choice, Taione won 34% of his district's 2,646 voters which covers Folaha, Longtime, Malapo, Vaini and Veitongo.
Constituency No.9 - Kaveinga Fa'anunu
As the choice of Akilisi's Democratic Party, this guy had the advantage from being associated with Akilisi. Of the 2,673 registered voters which range from Tatakamotonga, Holonga, Pelehake, Fua'amotu, Nakolo, Ha'asini, Fatumu and Lavengatonga, Kaveinga got 34% of the votes, with Seventeen Toumo'ua 15% as the closest one. The remaining 13 candidates included Viliami Fukofuka with just 9.8% of the votes.
Constituency No.10 - Semisi P. I. Tapueluelu (from Lapaha to Niutoua)
Former Tongan Prison Warden who got fired by Clive Edward in those crazy days, and has been campaigning ever since, and now he gets his revenge. Semisi who wrote a letter to the Kele'a Newspaper editor about candidates who'd choose between giving out "topai" or "favai" to the people, while he encouraged people to seek more of their candidate's word (favai) rather then taking the numerous materialistic donations (topai) - had earned him just right. I mean, this guy just keep to this word and preach, preach, preach during his compaign, and plus with being selected by Akilisi's Democratic Party, Semisi took the seat from the other favorites, Dr. Pohiva Tui'onetoa (former Audit General), by winning of 27% of the 2,981 registered voters, with Pohiva Tui'onetoa coming up second with 21%, and the remaining 13 candidates in this district had to share the rest of the 52% of the votes.
Constituency No.11 - Sunia Fili
Mr. Fili should be considered lucky to be Akilisi's ally as he barely snatched the seat with 37% of Eua's 2,706 registered voters. The other 2 candidates got 30% and 33% - one of the closest in this election.
Constituency No.12 - Mo'ale Finau
Having been selected by 'Akilisi's People's Democratic Party, and a long time citizen of the proud island of Ha'apai, Mo'ale took the seat easily with 32% of 1,474 registered voters comprising from Pangai, Hihifo, Koulo, Uiha and Lofanga. The other 9 candidates had to share the rest of the 68% of their votes.
Constituency No.13 - Uliti Uata (Uata Shipping - Pulupaki)
Again, as selected by the People's Democratic Party, Uata took the win easily from his competitor and former Inland Revenue Minister, Teisina Fuko with 70% of their 1,560 registered votes.
Constituency No.14 - Lisiate Akolo
Although he wasn't elected by the People's Democratic Party, Lisiate Akolo (former Labour Minister) took the win from Etuate Lavulavu and Piveni Piukala (who was the People's Democratic Party's elected choice).
Constituency No.15 - Samiu Vaipulu
Another Vava'u blow to the People's Democratic Party, Mr. Vaipulu (former Justice Minister) took the win from Viliami Kaufusi Helu (who was selected by the People's Democratic Party).
Constituency No.16 - Viliami Uasike Latu
The only Vava'u ally of the People's Democratic Party, Mr. Latu took the seat from Rev. Tevita Palefau (former Education Minister). Now the Reverend can fully concentrate on his church duties.
Constituency No.17 - Sosefo Fe'aomoeata Vakata (Niua Group)
This guy took the seat ahead of Niua's former people's representatives, Sione Mafi 'Iloa. Pea hange ko e lau 'a e leka Niuafo'ou . . . "koe 'atunga ia tou ha'u pe tou Fe'ao fokotu'u matou FM letio 'i Niua, ko matou ta-ta-'ulu ai pe 'i motu".
Pea ko e ngata'anga ia 'etau fananga ki he efiafi ni, kau 'alu a 'o kumi ha me'a keu kai he 'oku 'alu hake 'a e ki'i fiekaia. Katau toki vakai he taimi vave mai na. For an analysis of the likely scenario to come in the formation of Tonga's first ever representative government, click here. For the BBC's take on Tonga's election, click here.
Lalo Kalosipani News Update