14 Feb 2008

Leaders of French Polynesia's two pro-autonomy parties due to meet this morning

6:47 am on 14 February 2008

The leaders of French Polynesia's two pro-autonomy parties are due to meet this morning for their first encounter since the inconclusive weekend general election.

This comes after Gaston Flosse issued an ultimatum to Gaston Tong Sang who had ignored rival party leaders by appealing to members to join his coalition.

Walter Zweifel reports.

"A neutral venue in Papeete has been proposed by Mr Tong Sang for today's encounter to advance his efforts to form a coalition. This follows an ultimatum by Mr Flosse to have a commitment for a top-level meeting to be agreed to by yesterday afternoon. In a letter, he said continued silence from Mr Tong Sang would mean that To Tatou Aia had chosen bribery to get individual members to side with it. Before the election, the pro-autonomy parties failed to agree on a joint programme. And Mr Flosse has said any coalition depends on To Tatou Aia dropping five key members from any possible ministerial line-up. Meanwhile, the Tahoeraa has been in talks with the Union For Democracy of Oscar Temaru as just over week remains before the assembly is to elect the assembly president."