From the House by Pesi Fonua.
A petition that was tabled into Parliament to stop the construction of a restaurant/burger bar at the ocean swimming pool on the Touliki waterfront in the capital, was deferred for government to make a final decision.
The petition was tabled into Parliament by the Tongatapu No. 4 People’s Representative, Mateni Tapueluelu on 25 January 2021, before it was forwarded to the House’s Standing Committee on Privileges for its deliberation. The petition was against the restaurant development because of the possibility of disruption to people who are living in the area through the possible sale of alcoholic drinks.
Touliki swimming pool on the seafront, deteriorating and polluted over the years, was upgraded by a private entrepreneur, Ca’Bella Pacific Construction (Tonga) Ltd., early this year, and a small burger bar was built next to the pool.
The Standing Committee concluded that Parliament did not have the authority to make a final decision on the petition, but for the House to recognise the petition then pass it on for the Government to make the final decision.
The Speaker, Lord Fakafanua called for votes and the decision of the Standing Committee was carried with 15-0 votes.