19 Jul 2004

Two coalitions vying to be Government in Vanuatu

7:23 pm on 19 July 2004

There is confusion in Port Vila with two groups having signed separate Memorandums of Agreements claiming to have the majority in the newly elected Parliament.

The PACNEWS agency reports that the national broadcaster, the VBTC, says one group, led by Serge Vohor of the Union of Moderate Parties, claims to have the support of 29 elected MPs.

His grouping also includes the Melanesian Progressive Party - the MPP, the Greens Party, a faction of the National Community Association, the NCA, a faction of the Vanua'aku Pati and the Vanuatu Republican Party.

According to the agreement, Mr Vohor is to be their prime minister and former prime minister Maxim Carlot Korman his deputy.

Barak Sope, leader of the MPP party is to be the Foreign Minister while the Greens leader, Moana Carcasses is to be responsible for finance.

On the other hand, Ham Lini's National United Party, the NUP, claims a coalition of 28 members.

Mr Lini claims support from the Vanua'aku Pati, the People's Progressive Party, the NCA and the People's Action Party.

The second group is expected to be elect Mr Lini prime minister and the current caretaker Prime Minister, Edward Natapei, will be his his deputy.