2 Jun 2004

French Polynesian kingmaker maintains support for Oscar Temaru

3:58 pm on 2 June 2004

An opposition politician who emerged a kingmaker following elections in French Polynesia says her party's support for Oscar Temaru is strong and will not waiver.

The opposition No Oe e te Nunaa party won a single seat in an election upset last week that has left the president, Gaston Flosse, one seat short of a majority.

The No Oe e te Nunaa leader, Nicole Bouteau, thanked supporters today and confirmed her backing for the opposition coalition led by Oscar Temaru.

This group now holds the majority and is poised to form the new government.

Nicole Bouteau says Mr Temaru will be the opposition's candidate for president of the territory, which may be decided next week.

"I confirmed that we support Mr Temaru who said that he will be the candidate for the presidency of the Goverment. We will support him this week and next week."

Gaston Flosse, who is challenging the election result, is the other candidate for president of French Polynesia.

First up, however, are elections on Thursday for president of the assembly.