Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pōhiva misses key meetings

Tonga’s Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pōhiva has pulled out of crucial international meetings due to his ill health.

The Prime Minister was invited to attend three separate meetings:

  • The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM)  in Malta from November 24-29.
  • The 4th France-Oceania Summit in Paris, France on  November 26.
  • The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)  in Paris, France on November 30 –  December 11.

Last week the Prime Minister’s office announced Hon Pohiva was in Auckland for a medical check-up.

The Honourable Prime Minister Samuela ‘Akilisi Pohiva was officially invited to attend all three events but due to the results of his medical check-up last week, he has sent his regrets that he is not able to travel such long distance”, the Prime Minister’s Office said.

Statement from the Prime Minister’s Office:

Government of Tonga leaders and representatives will be amongst other regional and national leaders as they participate in dialogue and negotiations at three separate meetings.  The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) will take place in Malta from 24th to 29th November; the 4th France-Oceania Summit will take place in Paris, France on the 26th November; and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will take place in Paris, France on 30th November to 11 December 2015.

The Honourable Prime Minister Samuela ‘Akilisi Pohiva was officially invited to attend all three events but due to the results of his medical check-up last week, he has sent his regrets that he is not able to travel such long distance.

The Honourable Minister for Agriculture, Food, Forestry & Fisheries Semisi Fakahau, will lead the Tonga Government Delegation to the CHOGM meeting in Malta.  The theme for this year’s meeting is ‘The Commonwealth – Adding Global Value’ which highlights significant impact the Commonwealth has in providing solutions for small and developing states.  Hon. Minister Fakahau will be accompanied by Secretary for Foreign Affairs Mr. Va’inga Tone.

The Chief Secretary & Secretary to Cabinet Dr. Palenitina Langa’oi leads Tonga’s delegation to the 4thFrance-Oceania Summit in Paris.  This Summit will bring together the Republic of France and Forum countries to dialogue about current political and security, economic, environmental, social and development issues.  It will also be an opportunity for Members to reaffirm agreed partnership positions across all areas of interest with France.  Tonga’s Permanent Ambassador to the UN, Mr. Mahe Tupouniua and Legal Officer from the Prime Minister’s Office, Ms. ‘Elisapeta Lemoto are members of this delegation and will later join the CHOGM meeting and UNFCCC meeting.

The Honourable Deputy Prime Minister Siaosi Sovaleni will lead Tonga’s delegation to the UNFCCC, in particular, the United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP 21) and the 11th session of the Meeting of the Parties (CMP 11) to the Kyoto Protocol.  He will arrive in Paris on the 2nd of December and will deliver Tonga’s National statement at the High Level Segment on the 7th of December.  The objective of this conference is to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate change.  CEO MEIDECC Mr. Paula Ma’u, CEO Finance Mr. Tatafu Moeaki, Solicitor General Mr. Sione Sisifa and relevant government representatives are members of the delegation and will be in Paris this week to be part of important negotiations at this conference.

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