18 Feb 2005

Decision close on whether the Flosse Government will resign in French Polynesia

2:34 pm on 18 February 2005

A decision is imminent in French Polynesia on whether the government will resign.

The president, Gaston Flosse, has been meeting his party's central committee this afternoon, to see if the government should quit or face a no-confidence motion tomorrow.

Walter Zweifel reports from Tahiti.

"Mr Flosse says Tahoeraa Huiraatira failed to win a majority in last weekend's election, but he says the result was a victory for those wanting autonomy. his spokesman, Jean Christophe Bouissou, resigned in protest yesterday, saying Mr Flosse is destroying the party and stopping reconcilation. And he says it is bad for democracy if Mr Flosse is clinging on to power at all costs. If there is no resignation his position will be tested in the assembly tomorrow."

Meanwhile, the man who declared himself president of French Polynesia during last October's political turmoil says the motion is flawed.

Rene Hoffer has taken court action for the motion to be thrown out, claiming that those who signed it went beyond what is allowed under the new autonomy statute.

They asked for the President of French Polynesia to resign and that is not written in Article 156. It only says that the Government can be overthrown.