11 Jun 2007

Vanuatu's Internal Affairs minister replaced

1:36 pm on 11 June 2007

Vanuatu's Minister of Internal Affairs, George Wells, has been replaced by Philip Boetoro.

The replacement follows Mr Wells' recent decision to leave the Vanuaaku Pati and join another government coalition partner, the National United Party.

However, a provision in the agreement which binds the Vanuaaku Pati to the coalition government stipulates that the Minister for Internal Affairs must be a VP member.

The Prime Minister, Ham Lini, subsequently replaced Mr Wells with Mr Boetoro, a VP backbencher, who had been lobbying for the Minister's removal for around two years.

He and other backbenchers had pushed for Mr Wells' suspension from the party due to alleged breaches of the leadership code, citing issues in his private life.