23 Mar 2006

Ousted French Polynesian mayor takes legal action over election

4:07 pm on 23 March 2006

The former mayor of French Polynesia's community of Tumaraa has lodged a legal challenge to last week's election of his successor, Justine Teura of the Union For Democracy.

The Tahitipresse news agency says Cyril Tetuanui of the territorial opposition's Tahoeraa Huiraatira Party has lodged a formal claim in a Papeete court.

Mr Tetuanui alleges that the municipal council in which his rivals had a majority were exposed to undue pressure in choosing Mrs Teura.

The council members of the ruling majority was flown from Raiatea island to Papeete to the presidency before the vote to choose a mayor.

The Tahoeraa claimed they did so against their will.

But the council members said they went to Papeete to avoid pressure from the Tahoeraa.

A ruling is expected in two months.