Police have confiscated more than 2600 marijuana plants in Vava’u.
This was raised during debates in Parliament today. The Minister of Police also confirmed to the House that plants were seized during a police operation in Holonga yesterday.
Police seized 2665 cannabis plants, weapons and ammunition.
The Hon. Minister of Police Mateni Tapueluelu revealed this after Vava’u 16 MP ‘Akosita Lavulavu today called on government to consider increasing the budget allocation for community policing.
Lavulavu said the drug bust in Vava’u is a result of a collaboration between the community police and police officers.
Six people have been arrested in connection with the alleged crime.
Police investigation continues.
Meanwhile, police have also established a special drug unit to investigate drug related offences.
This came to light after the Police Minister said he will request for a supplementary budget in Parliament to curb drug related crimes.
Tapueluelu said they are seeking a supplementary budget from different stakeholders in Tonga and abroad for a drug surveillance boat to service the kingdom. He also mentioned that increasing the budget allocation for community policing is included in the supplementary budget.
He reaffirmed his ministry’s commitment to honour the King’s wish for the elimination of drugs as it remains an obstacle to Tonga’s economic development, peace and stability.
Tapueluelu also reported a police officer was also arrested during a recent drug bust operation. He said it is their effort to clean up the Tonga police force.
Another drug bust was made at the weekend. 29 cannabis were seized along with dried marijuana leaves and cash from a plantation at Hahake.
The MEIDECC Minister Hon. Poasi Tei urged Tapueluelu to also empower the community police so they assist police in protecting people’s lives.