14 Oct 2004

Warnings of defections from French Polynesia coalition

7:13 am on 14 October 2004

A close observer of politics in French Polynesia says there will be more defections from the defeated Oscar Temaru-led government in coming weeks.

Mr Temaru heads a caretaker government following the defeat of his coalition in a no-confidence vote in the Territorial Assembly on Saturday.

The defection to the Tahoeraa Huiraatira opposition of MP Noa Tetuanui, a former member of the coalition's Union for Democracy group, led to the defeat.

It's not clear when a new president will be elected.

Gabriel Tetiarahi, head of the Hiti Tau organisation for youth, says he agrees with the Temaru camp that new general elections should be held.

But he says the Gaston Flosse-led opposition, now in the majority, will not support this, and more defections from the Temaru coalition can also be expected.

"I am afraid that some, some parliamentarians from Oscar Temaru political party and the others... Some of them, I am afraid they will join the Gaston Flosse majority, the new one."