This week there are competing claims from the two major factions elected to Tonga's Parliament regarding the election of the next Prime Minister. Neither the nine nobles nor the 12 Friendly Island Democratic Party people's representatives have enough seats to control the decision, leaving the election up to the five “independent” people's representatives.
The online magazine Matangi Tonga reports that a bloc of 15 members, which includes the nine nobles, have agreed on one candidate. While no one is willing to state who that candidate is, speculation is that the nomination is for the noble Tu'ivakano, currently the interim Minister of Training, Education, Youth and Sports. http://www.matangitonga.to/article/tonganews/politics/20101208_tonga_pm_nomination.shtml
Meanwhile, Radio New Zealand is reporting that the leader of the Friendly Islands Democratic Party, Akilisi Pohiva, remains confident that it will form the government, claiming that he should have 15 votes. http://www.rnzi.com/pages/news.php?op=read&id=57590
All this speculation will end soon, as the Interim Speaker is scheduled to receive formal nominations next Thursday, with Parliament due to sit the next day to begin the process to finally elect a Prime Minister.