20 Sep 2004

Concern over French court consideration of French Poynesian elections

6:57 am on 20 September 2004

The French Polynesian president, Oscar Temaru, has warned that relations with Paris won't be normalised until it is clear that France's highest court, the Council of State, won't annul the May elections won by his coalition.

Mr Temaru made the comment at the beginning of the budget debate which was again boycotted by the opposition, Tahoeraa Huraatira Party of Gaston Flosse.

The President said annulling the result would be a decision of colonial nature and amount to an attack on the basic principles of democracy.

After Mr Flosse's shock loss at the polls, France deployed mobile riot police in Tahiti while Mr Flosse unsuccessfully tried to have the election outcome overturned, claiming election irregularities.

In his budget speech, Mr Temaru restated that he sought to govern differently from his predecessor.

He says he regrets the scorched earth policy of the previous administration which left, as he put it, the drawers and computers empty of all information.