8 Jul 2003

Tuvalu PM says some opposition MPs may join the government's ranks

11:14 am on 8 July 2003

Tuvalu's Prime Minister, Saufatu Sopoanga claims the parliamentary majority held by the opposition party maybe short lived as some of its MPs are considering crossing the floor.

Mr Sopoanga says he's currently in talks with two opposition MPs who may join the government.

The opposition says the Prime Minister is trying to avoid a vote of no confidence and is breaching the constitution by not calling parliament together after the election of a speaker.

It has launched court proceedings to have the governor general convene parliament.

Mr Sopoanga says under the constituion, he is allowed time to shore up numbers for his government.

"T hose consultations have beengoing on from the start and are still going on. That is the reason whi I am dragging it. So I am saying that it is quite safe. It is quite constitutional what I am doing at the moment."

The oppostion leader, Amasone Kilei has dismissed such claims saying that opposition MPs are adamant about ousting Mr Sopoanga.