Lulutai plane flying on Christmas Day disputed as ‘unfair’ after man arrested for swimming on the public holiday

A confrontation at the Vava’u police station this afternoon led to police releasing a man they had arrested and charged after he allegedly swam in the sea during Christmas day.

Neiafu Town Officer Vāvā Lapota.

Neiafu town officer Vāvā Lapota said his 21-year-old son was arrested today and intended to be remanded in custody after the police claimed he had breached the kingdom’s Christmas Day law.

He said the police called and told him to bring bedding for his son as he was expected to remain in custody, apparently overnight, while they were processing his charges.

Lapota told Kaniva News he arrived at the police station and confronted the police officer who was working on his son’s arrest.

He said he told her that his son should be processed and released without being held in prison.  

He claimed the police officer insisted she needed more time because of staffing shortages.

However, Lapota pointed her to several police officers who he said were standing around in the office.   

He said he asked the police officer why they didn’t stop the Lulutai aircraft from doing business on Christmas as it is an apparent breach of the Christmas Day services prohibition.

He said no response was given to his question.

He said a Lulutai aircraft had conducted several flight services on Vava’u today, during Christmas.

“That’s unfair”, he said in Tongan.

Lapota said the police finally agreed and released his son. However, they told him that his son should expect receiving his charging document after Christmas.

The police and Lulutai airlines could not be reached for comment.

Under Tongan law, people are not allowed to conduct business or work on Sundays. Public transport is also not available on Sundays.

The law stipulates that activities such as swimming, playing sport, dancing, listening to loud music, and fishing are illegal on Sundays.

It says Christmas Day and Good Friday must be observed in compliance with Sunday laws.

The law also gives the Minister of Police the power to grant exemption especially in a state of emergency.

About The Author

Sometimes when a business is growing, it needs a little help.

Right now Kaniva News provides a free, politically independent, bilingual news service for readers around the world that is absolutely unique. We are the largest New Zealand-based Tongan news service, and our stories reach Tongans  wherever they are round the world. But as we grow, there are increased demands on Kaniva News for translation into Tongan on our social media accounts and for the costs associated with expansion. We believe it is important for Tongans to have their own voice and for Tongans to preserve their language, customs and heritage. That is something to which we are strongly committed. That’s why we are asking you to consider sponsoring our work and helping to preserve a uniquely Tongan point of view for our readers and listeners.

spot_imgspot_imgspot_imgspot_img

Latest news

Related news