16 Sep 2005

Vanua'aku Pati leader not expecting to lose out in potential cabinet reshuffle

3:53 pm on 16 September 2005

The head of the Vanua'aku Pati, or VP, says he doesn't expect his party to lose out in any upcoming reshuffle of the Vanuatu coalition government.

The government is reportedly reviewing the memorandum of understanding that binds the ten parties in its coalition.

This follows changes brought about by the reunification of the Vanua'aku Pati.

The original coalition agreement, for 11 parties, recognised the Vanua'aku Pati and the Vanua K Group separately.

Sources within the Prime Minister Ham Lini's National United Party say VP should relinquish one of its four ministries to its side, now that the party had been reunited.

However, the VP leader, Edward Natapei, says his party won't lose out in any review.

"No, I don't see that the Vanuaku Pati will lose any... It will simply mean that we have to amend the agreement to accommodate to reflect what is currently the situation where Vanuaku Pati has an extra ministry and the National United Party also has an extra."