28 Jun 2004

French Polynesian opposition MP may join government

10:41 am on 28 June 2004

An opposition member of the French Polynesian assembly, Temauri Foster, says he has held talks with the new ruling coalition about possibly switching sides.

Mr Foster, who is a Tahoeraa Huiraatira member from the eastern Tuamotus, has told the Tahitipresse news agency that he has entered into such negotiations with what he calls a global vision for the archipelago.

Since last month's election, a Tahoeraa member from the Marquesas islands, Jean-Alain Frebault [freh-baw], has left the party, increasing the new Oscar Temaru-led government's majority to three in the 57-member assembly.

Mr Foster, who is the mayor of the atoll of Hao and a former transport minister, has declined to say whether other Tahoeraa members are also discussing a possible defection to the new ruling coalition.