4 Jul 2005

French Polynesia delays GIP restructure

4:23 am on 4 July 2005

The French Polynesian president, Oscar Temaru, says he has delayed the planned restructure of the GIP force by six months.

His appointee to review the 1,300-strong force, Christiane Athane, was to complete her three-month review now but Mr Temaru has told the Tahitipresse news agency that she will be given to the end of the year because she has not done everything.

The report gives no details about the extension of the review period but it comes just days after a GIP spokesman warned of unprecedented strikes and blockades should negotiations for the renewal of about 200 jobs fail.

The three-month term of the GIP interim head, Yannick Boosie, is also set to end now in line with the deal brokered and guaranteed by the French state in early April.

The deal ended two blockades of the port of Papeete which were staged by hundreds of GIP members in a rebellion against Mr Temaru after he appointed a new GIP boss they refused to accept.