Our History

The Tonga Police has a long and proud history of service to the King and people of Tonga dating back to the 1860s during the reign of King George Tupou I. The first Minister of Police Kupu-a-Vanua Veikune was appointed by the King in 1868. The first Police Act was passed in 1891 following the Constitution of Tonga in 1875. The Act was updated in 1903 and replaced in 1923. A new Act was again introduced in 1968 to coincide with policing assistance from the United Kingdom.

It is our close working relationship with the UK that began shaping our role and how we interacted with the community. The influence of this relationship is still evident in our structure, practices and ceremonial functions. . In our 145 years of history Tonga Police faced many challenges that has further shaped how we carry out our duties for the community.

Our history demonstrates how we have grown over the years as an organization and offers still lessons for the future. It reflects how the changing environment has changed policing in Tonga highlighting the need for the organization to evolve with time. As a small police service operating within a small island State the Tonga Police does not escape the complexities of a policing environment increasingly affected by globalisation.

Over the years Tonga Police have grown in resource, responsibilities and developed practices to better respond to growing expectations of the community. We have adopted new strategies, technology, forensic capability, new fleet of transport, marine capability, a tactical capability, and management system. We recognize still that growth is required in all aspect of policing.

In 2010 the new Tonga Police Act was introduced. It ushered in new powers and responsibilities to better position the organization in responding and managing a changing and dynamic society. The following pages are brief descriptions of events that shaped the Tonga Police into what it is today. As a newly created site we realise that certain events may not be listed and so we welcome any addition to our page in terms of historical facts. Please email your additions to our contact emails or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Brief History