TONGA and Papua New Guinea (PNG) are not development partners yet Port Moresby commits to provide assistance for Tonga in its preparation to host the 2019 Pacific Games.
These countries have no diplomatic ties like Tonga have with New Zealand and Australia and PNG is willing to lend a helping hand.
The Hon. Prime Minister, ‘Akilisi Pohiva reveals this in Parliament today.
His remarks came when he informed the House, a group of 10 delegation from PNG is here as a follow up of Port Moresby’s commitment to assist Tonga’s effort to host the upcoming event.
The group led by the Minister for Sports Hon. Justin Tkatchenko and government officials arrived in Nuku’alofa at the weekend.
According to Pohiva, PNG commits to reconstruct Teufaiva Stadium.
“It would be a significant development enabling Tonga to host international sporting events,” says the PM.
According to the PM, this is a great contribution PNG has committed towards Tonga.
PNG also commits to provide high performance facilities to help athletes with their preparation.
“PNG is a rich country in the Pacific and it’s reaching out to us. Therefore it’s crucial we show them our respect.
Tonga and PNG are not development partners but they came here at their own expense to help Tonga,” pleaded the PM.
The PM also sought the Speaker’s approval to allow all Cabinet Ministers from Parliament to bid farewell to the visiting delegation.
The Legislative Assembly today adjourned around 11am to allow Members to farewell the visitors.
Earlier this year, the Hon. Prime Minister, ‘Akilisi Pohiva led a government delegation to PNG. There, he met his counterpart, Peter O’neill and discussed possible assistance from Port Moresby for Tonga.
Hon. Pohiva says PNG had been a very good host to them, something they never had expected.
“PNG government paid for our stay at one of the country’s five star hotel at the capital. They looked after us well. We were glad to also toured the facilities used by athletes in preparation for the South Pacific Games last year. ”