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The Global Gender Equality Constitutional Database is a repository of gender equality related provisions in 194 constitutions from around the world. The Database was updated in partnership with the International Bar Association's Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) and with support from the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) and the Government of Japan. Experience its wealth and depth of information by starting your search now.

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Customary Law

Tonga, English

There shall be but one law in Tonga for chiefs and commoners for non-Tongans and Tongans. No laws shall be enacted for one class and not for another class but the law shall be the same for all the people of this land. (Clause 4)

Tonga, Tongan

‘E taha pe ‘a e lao ‘o Tonga ni ki he hou‘eiki mo e me‘avale ki he fa‘ahinga kakai kotoa pe ‘oku ‘ikai ko e Tonga mo e Tonga. ‘E ‘ikai fokotu‘u ha lao ‘i he fonua ni ki ha fa‘ahinga pea tuku ha fa‘ahinga ka ‘e taha pe mo mamafa tatau pe ki he kakai kotoa pe ‘o e fonua ni. (Kupu 4)

Customary Law

Tonga, English

The following is the law of succession to hereditary estates and titles:
Children lawfully born in wedlock only may inherit and the eldest male child shall succeed and the heirs of his body but if he have no descendants then the second male child and the heirs of his body and so on until all the male line is ended. Should there be no male child the eldest female child shall succeed and the heirs of her body and if she should have no descendants the second female child and the heirs of her body and so on until the female line is ended. And failing direct heirs the property shall revert to the eldest brother of the owner of the property beginning with the eldest and his heirs in succession to the youngest and their heirs in accordance with the law of inheritance. And if the brothers have no descendants it shall descend to the eldest sister and the female line as provided in the case of the male line. And if these should have no descendants and there should be no legitimate heir it shall revert to the Crown in accordance with the one hundred and twelfth clause. But should a female be next in succession to the title of a noble or of a hereditary chief the next male heir shall inherit the title and estates. But should such female afterwards have a legitimate male issue the title and estates shall revert to the male issue of the female upon the death of the male in possession of the estate:
Provided that the female that is the heir shall occupy the town allotment and the plantation lands appertaining to such title but the hereditary estates that is the lands occupied by the people shall be held by the inheritor of the title. …
And whereas by Tongan custom the noble Niukapu forms part of the 'Ulutolu line, now therefore it is decreed that in the event the holder of the estate and title of Niukapu is not a descendant by blood of the original Niukapu before 1875, such estate and title shall revert at the death of such holder to a descendant by blood of the Niukapu line. (Clause 111)

Tonga, Tongan

Ko eni ‘a e lao ‘o e hokohoko ki he ngaahi tofi‘a mo e ngaahi hingoa tukufakaholo:
‘E ngofua ke kau ‘i he hokohoko ni ‘a e fanau tupu mali pe ‘e hoko ki he ‘uluaki tamasi‘i tangata mo e ngaahi ‘ea ‘o hono sino pea ka hala ia ‘o ‘ikai hano hako ‘e hoko ki hono ua ‘o e tamasi‘i tangata mo e ngaahi ‘ea ‘o hono sino pea fai pehe kae ‘oua kuo ‘osi ‘a e fanau tangata. Ka ‘ikai ha tamasi‘i tangata ‘e hoko ki he ‘uluaki tamasi‘i fefine mo e ngaahi ‘ea ‘o hono sino pea fai pehe kae ‘oua kuo ‘osi ‘a e fanau fefine. Ka hala ia ‘o ‘ikai ha hako ‘e foki ki he ngaahi tokoua tangata ‘o ia ‘a ia na‘e ‘o‘ona ‘a e tofi‘a pea fai mei he ‘uluaki ‘o a‘u ki he ki mui pea mo honau hako ‘o hange ko e lao ‘o e hokohoko. Pea ka hala ‘a e ngaahi tokoua tangata pea ka ‘ikai ha taha tonu tupu mali ‘iate kinautolu ‘e foki ki he Pule‘anga ‘o hange ko hono teau ma hongofulu ma ua ‘o e kupu. Pea koe‘uhi na‘a faifai pea hoko ha fefine ko e ‘ea ki ha hingoa ‘o ha nopele pea ka pehe ‘e hoko ‘a e tangata ‘oku hoko ki he fefine ‘o ma‘u ‘a e hingoa mo e lakanga ko ia pea ka faifai pea ma‘u ha hako tangata ‘e he fefine ko ia pea ka pekia ‘a e tangata na‘e ma‘u ‘a e hingoa ‘e toki foki ki he hako ‘o e fefine ko ia:
Pea ‘e ‘i he fefine ko e ‘ea ‘a e tofi‘a tukufakaholo ‘a e ‘api kolo mo e ‘api ‘i ‘uta ka ko e tofi‘a lahi ‘oku nofo ai ‘a e kakai ‘e ma‘u ‘e he tangata ‘e ma‘u ‘a e hingoa ko ia. Koe‘uhi ‘i he anga faka-Tonga na‘e fa‘a ngaue‘aki ma‘u ha ngofua ke lava ha tamasi‘i ohi ‘o hoko ki ha ngaahi tofi‘a mo ha ngaahi hingoa ‘o ‘ene tamai- ‘i-he-ohi ko ia ai ‘oku tu‘utu‘uni mamafa heni ka pekia ha taha ‘oku ne ma‘u ha tofi‘a pe hingoa ‘a ia ko ‘ene ma‘u ‘a e tofi‘a pe hingoa ko ia koe‘uhi ko e hako ia ‘i he toto ‘o e tamasi‘i ohi ko ia kuo pau ke foki ‘a e tofi‘a mo e hingoa ko ia ‘o hange ko e ngaahi tu‘utu‘uni ‘a e kupu ni pea kapau ‘oku ‘ikai ha hako ‘i he toto pehe ‘oku kei mo‘ui ‘oku pau ke ngaue‘aki ‘a e ngaahi tu‘utu‘uni ‘a e kupu ‘oku hoko leva mai pe ki heni.
Pea koe‘uhi ko e fatungamotu‘a ‘o Tonga ‘oku kau ai ‘a e Nopele Niukapu ki he laine ‘o e ‘Ulutolu, ko ia ‘oku tu‘utu‘uni ai heni ka hoko ‘o ma‘u ‘a e tofi‘a tukufakaholo mo e hingoa ‘o e Niukapu ‘e ha taha ‘oku ‘ikai ko ha hako ‘i he toto ‘o e ‘uluaki Niukapu ki mu‘a ‘i he 1875, kuo pau ke foki ‘a e tofi‘a tukufakaholo mo e hingoa ko ia ‘i ha pekia ‘a e taha ‘oku ne ma‘u ki ha hako ‘i he toto ‘o e laine Niukapu. (Kupu 111)

Customary Law

Tonga, English

No person may succeed to any tofi'a or any title until he has attained the age of twenty one years, save for members of the Royal Family who shall be deemed to have attained maturity at eighteen years of age. (Clause 27)

Tonga, Tongan

‘E ‘ikai ha taha ‘e ngofua ke hoko ko e ‘ea ki ha tofi‘a pe ha hingoa kae ‘oua kuo kakato hono uofulu mā taha ta‘u, tuku kehe ‘a kinautolu ‘i he fāmili ‘o e Tu‘i ‘a ia kuo pau ke lau kuo nau a‘u ki he ta‘u fakalao ‘i he ta‘u ‘e hongofulu-mā-valu. (Kupu 27)

Protection from Violence

Tonga, English

No person shall serve another against his will except he be undergoing punishment by law and any slave who may escape from a foreign country to Tonga (unless he be escaping from justice being guilty of homicide or theft or any great crime or involved in debt) shall be free from the moment he sets foot on Tongan soil for no person shall be in servitude under the protection of the flag of Tonga. (Clause 2)

Tonga, Tongan

‘E ‘ikai ngaue fakatamaio‘eiki ‘e ha taha ki ha toko taha kapau ‘oku ‘ikai te ne loto ki ai ngata pe ‘i he ‘ene mo‘ua ki he lao pea ka hola ha popula mei ha fonua kehe ki Tonga ni (kapau ‘oku ‘ikai ko e hola mei he lao ‘o ha fonua ko e me‘a ‘i he ‘ene fakapo pe kaiha‘a pe ‘i he fai ha me‘a lahi pehē pe ha mo‘ua) te ne tau‘atāina leva ‘i he ‘ene tu‘uta ki Tonga ni koe‘uhi ‘e ‘ikai ‘aupito nofo fakapopula ha toko taha ‘oku nofo ‘i he malumalu ‘o e fuka ‘o Tonga. (Kupu 2)

Status of International Law

Tonga, English

It shall be lawful for the King to make treaties with Foreign States provided that such treaties shall be in accordance with the laws of the Kingdom.
… (Clause 39)

Tonga, Tongan

‘E ngofua ki he Tu‘i ke fai ‘a e ngaahi talite mo e ngaahi Pule‘anga Muli ka ‘oku ‘ikai ngofua ke ne fai ‘a e ngaahi talite ‘oku fai kehe mo e ngaahi lao ‘o e Pule‘anga ni.
… (Kupu 39)

Property, Inheritance and Land Tenure

Tonga, English

Since it appears to be the will of God that man should be free as He has made all men of one blood therefore shall the people of Tonga and all who sojourn or may sojourn in this Kingdom be free for ever. And all men may use their lives and persons and time to acquire and possess property and to dispose of their labour and the fruit of their hands and to use their own property as they will. (Clause 1)

Tonga, Tongan

Ko e me‘a ‘i he ha mai ko e finangalo ‘o e ‘Otua ke tau‘atāina ‘a e tangata ko e me‘a ‘i he ‘ene ngaohi ‘o toto pe taha ‘a e kakai kotoa pe ko ia ‘e tau‘ataina ‘o ta‘engata ‘a e kakai Tonga mo e kakai kotoa pe ‘oku nofo ni pea ‘e nofo ‘i he Pule’anga ni. Pea ‘e ‘atā ki he kakai kotoa pe ‘enau mo‘ui mo honau sino mo honau taimi ke kumi mo ma‘u koloa pea ke fa‘iteliha ki he ngaue mo e fua ‘o honau nima pea ke pule‘i tāfataha pe ‘e kinautolu ‘a e ngaahi me‘a ‘anautolu. (Kupu 1)

Property, Inheritance and Land Tenure

Tonga, English

No person may succeed to any tofi'a or any title until he has attained the age of twenty one years, save for members of the Royal Family who shall be deemed to have attained maturity at eighteen years of age. (Clause 27)

Tonga, Tongan

‘E ‘ikai ha taha ‘e ngofua ke hoko ko e ‘ea ki ha tofi‘a pe ha hingoa kae ‘oua kuo kakato hono uofulu mā taha ta‘u, tuku kehe ‘a kinautolu ‘i he fāmili ‘o e Tu‘i ‘a ia kuo pau ke lau kuo nau a‘u ki he ta‘u fakalao ‘i he ta‘u ‘e hongofulu-mā-valu. (Kupu 27)

Property, Inheritance and Land Tenure

Tonga, English

All the land is the property of the King and he may at pleasure grant to the nobles and titular chiefs or matabules one or more estates to become their hereditary estates. It is hereby declared by this Constitution that it shall not be lawful for anyone at any time hereafter whether he be the King or any one of the chiefs or the people of this country to sell any land whatever in the Kingdom of Tonga but they may lease it only in accordance with this Constitution and mortgage it in accordance with the Land Act. And this declaration become a covenant binding on the King and chiefs of this Kingdom for themselves and their heirs and successors for ever. (Clause 104)

Tonga, Tongan

‘Oku ‘i he Tu‘i ‘a e fonua kotoa pe mo e kelekele mo e ngaahi tofi‘a mo e ngaahi ‘api pea ‘oku ngofua kiate ia ke finangalo ke tuku ki ha hou‘eiki nopele mo ha hou‘eiki ma‘u hingoa pe ha kau matapule ‘oku ne finangalo ki ai ha tofi‘a pe ko ha ngaahi tofi‘a ke hoko ko honau ngaahi tofi‘a ke tukufakaholo. ‘Oku toe fakapapau ‘i he Konisitutone ni ‘e tapu ‘aupito ‘aupito ‘o ta‘engata ki ha toko taha pe ko e Tu‘i pe ko ha taha ‘o e hou‘eiki mo e kakai ‘o e fonua ni ke fakatau ha konga si‘i ‘o e kelekele ‘o e Pule‘anga ‘o Tonga ngata pe ke lisi ‘o hange ‘oku tu‘u ‘i he Konisitutone pea ke mokisi (mortgage) ia ‘o fakatatau ki he Lao ‘o e Kelekele. Pea ‘e hoko ‘a e tohi ni ko e fuakava fakapapau ‘e he Tu‘i mo e hou‘eiki ‘o e Pule‘anga ni koe‘uhi ko kinautolu mo kinautolu ‘e hoko kiate kinautolu ‘o lauikuonga. (Kupu 104)

Property, Inheritance and Land Tenure

Tonga, English

Tongan male subjects by birth of or over the age of 16 years may be granted town allotments and tax allotments out of estates granted in pursuance of this Constitution with the consent of or upon consultation with the estate holder and out of the lands of the Crown, by the Minister of Lands. Such allotments shall be hereditary and shall be of such size and at an annual rent as may be determined by law. A widow shall have the right to succeed according to law, to her deceased husband's tax and town allotments. (Clause 113)

Tonga, Tongan

Ko e kakai tangata kuo fa‘ele‘i ko e Tonga ‘oku pe laka hake ‘i he 16 honau ta‘u motu‘a ‘e ngofua ke foaki atu ke nau ma‘u ‘api kolo mo ‘api tukuhau mei he ngaahi tofi‘a kuo foaki ‘o fakatatau mo e Konisitutone ‘i he loto ki ai pe ‘i ha feongoongoi mo e ma‘u tofi‘a pea mei he ngaahi tofi‘a ‘o e Pule‘anga, ‘e he Minisita Fonua. Kuo pau ke tukufakaholo ‘a e ngaahi ‘api koia pea ko e me‘a ki hono lahi mo e lisi fakata‘u kuo pau ke tu‘utu‘uni ki ai ‘a e lao. Kuo pau ke ma‘u ‘e he uitou fakatatau ki he lao ‘a e totonu ke ne ma‘u ‘a e ‘api tukuhau mo e ‘api kolo ‘o hono mali kuo pekia. (Kupu 113)

Property, Inheritance and Land Tenure

Tonga, English

The following is the law of succession to hereditary estates and titles:
Children lawfully born in wedlock only may inherit and the eldest male child shall succeed and the heirs of his body but if he have no descendants then the second male child and the heirs of his body and so on until all the male line is ended. Should there be no male child the eldest female child shall succeed and the heirs of her body and if she should have no descendants the second female child and the heirs of her body and so on until the female line is ended. And failing direct heirs the property shall revert to the eldest brother of the owner of the property beginning with the eldest and his heirs in succession to the youngest and their heirs in accordance with the law of inheritance. And if the brothers have no descendants it shall descend to the eldest sister and the female line as provided in the case of the male line. And if these should have no descendants and there should be no legitimate heir it shall revert to the Crown in accordance with the one hundred and twelfth clause. But should a female be next in succession to the title of a noble or of a hereditary chief the next male heir shall inherit the title and estates. But should such female afterwards have a legitimate male issue the title and estates shall revert to the male issue of the female upon the death of the male in possession of the estate:
Provided that the female that is the heir shall occupy the town allotment and the plantation lands appertaining to such title but the hereditary estates that is the lands occupied by the people shall be held by the inheritor of the title. …
And whereas by Tongan custom the noble Niukapu forms part of the 'Ulutolu line, now therefore it is decreed that in the event the holder of the estate and title of Niukapu is not a descendant by blood of the original Niukapu before 1875, such estate and title shall revert at the death of such holder to a descendant by blood of the Niukapu line. (Clause 111)

Tonga, Tongan

Ko eni ‘a e lao ‘o e hokohoko ki he ngaahi tofi‘a mo e ngaahi hingoa tukufakaholo: ‘E ngofua ke kau ‘i he hokohoko ni ‘a e fanau tupu mali pe ‘e hoko ki he ‘uluaki tamasi‘i tangata mo e ngaahi ‘ea ‘o hono sino pea ka hala ia ‘o ‘ikai hano hako ‘e hoko ki hono ua ‘o e tamasi‘i tangata mo e ngaahi ‘ea ‘o hono sino pea fai pehe kae ‘oua kuo ‘osi ‘a e fanau tangata. Ka ‘ikai ha tamasi‘i tangata ‘e hoko ki he ‘uluaki tamasi‘i fefine mo e ngaahi ‘ea ‘o hono sino pea fai pehe kae ‘oua kuo ‘osi ‘a e fanau fefine. Ka hala ia ‘o ‘ikai ha hako ‘e foki ki he ngaahi tokoua tangata ‘o ia ‘a ia na‘e ‘o‘ona ‘a e tofi‘a pea fai mei he ‘uluaki ‘o a‘u ki he ki mui pea mo honau hako ‘o hange ko e lao ‘o e hokohoko. Pea ka hala ‘a e ngaahi tokoua tangata pea ka ‘ikai ha taha tonu tupu mali ‘iate kinautolu ‘e foki ki he Pule‘anga ‘o hange ko hono teau ma hongofulu ma ua ‘o e kupu. Pea koe‘uhi na‘a faifai pea hoko ha fefine ko e ‘ea ki ha hingoa ‘o ha nopele pea ka pehe ‘e hoko ‘a e tangata ‘oku hoko ki he fefine ‘o ma‘u ‘a e hingoa mo e lakanga ko ia pea ka faifai pea ma‘u ha hako tangata ‘e he fefine ko ia pea ka pekia ‘a e tangata na‘e ma‘u ‘a e hingoa ‘e toki foki ki he hako ‘o e fefine ko ia:
Pea ‘e ‘i he fefine ko e ‘ea ‘a e tofi‘a tukufakaholo ‘a e ‘api kolo mo e ‘api ‘i ‘uta ka ko e tofi‘a lahi ‘oku nofo ai ‘a e kakai ‘e ma‘u ‘e he tangata ‘e ma‘u ‘a e hingoa ko ia. Koe‘uhi ‘i he anga faka-Tonga na‘e fa‘a ngaue‘aki ma‘u ha ngofua ke lava ha tamasi‘i ohi ‘o hoko ki ha ngaahi tofi‘a mo ha ngaahi hingoa ‘o ‘ene tamai- ‘i-he-ohi ko ia ai ‘oku tu‘utu‘uni mamafa heni ka pekia ha taha ‘oku ne ma‘u ha tofi‘a pe hingoa ‘a ia ko ‘ene ma‘u ‘a e tofi‘a pe hingoa ko ia koe‘uhi ko e hako ia ‘i he toto ‘o e tamasi‘i ohi ko ia kuo pau ke foki ‘a e tofi‘a mo e hingoa ko ia ‘o hange ko e ngaahi tu‘utu‘uni ‘a e kupu ni pea kapau ‘oku ‘ikai ha hako ‘i he toto pehe ‘oku kei mo‘ui ‘oku pau ke ngaue‘aki ‘a e ngaahi tu‘utu‘uni ‘a e kupu ‘oku hoko leva mai pe ki heni.
Pea koe‘uhi ko e fatungamotu‘a ‘o Tonga ‘oku kau ai ‘a e Nopele Niukapu ki he laine ‘o e ‘Ulutolu, ko ia ‘oku tu‘utu‘uni ai heni ka hoko ‘o ma‘u ‘a e tofi‘a tukufakaholo mo e hingoa ‘o e Niukapu ‘e ha taha ‘oku ‘ikai ko ha hako ‘i he toto ‘o e ‘uluaki Niukapu ki mu‘a ‘i he 1875, kuo pau ke foki ‘a e tofi‘a tukufakaholo mo e hingoa ko ia ‘i ha pekia ‘a e taha ‘oku ne ma‘u ki ha hako ‘i he toto ‘o e laine Niukapu. (Kupu 111)