16 Jan 2006

Cabinet reshuffle forces CEO of Air Tahiti to resign his position

11:16 am on 16 January 2006

The chief of staff of the French Polynesian president has resigned from his post as CEO of the territory's international carrier, Air Tahiti Nui.

Patrick Leboucher says a recent cabinet re-shuffle has seen President Oscar Temaru assume the aviation portfolio and therefore there was a possible conflict of interest between his two jobs.

Mr Leboucher is expected to be replaced at the helm of the airline by a banker, Eric Pommier.

Mr Leboucher was rehired as cabinet director by Mr Temaru last year despite Mr Leboucher taking legal action against him for improper dismissal over losing the job in late 2004 when the Temaru government lost a no-confidence vote.

As compensation Mr Leboucher was paid the equivalent of fourteen annual pays of the minimum wage for the five months he wasn't cabinet director.