10 May 2010

Gaston Flosse says he'll carry on in French Polynesian politics despite son-in-law's claim

1:40 pm on 10 May 2010

French Polynesia's veteran politician, Gaston Flosse, has told a blog in Tahiti that he won't relinquish his role in local politics, contradicting his son-in-law's statements on public radio.

Edouard Fritch, who is French Polynesia's vice-president and Mr Flosse's deputy in the Tahoeraa Huiraatira Party, said Mr Flosse would not seek re-election when the territory's assembly is to be renewed in an early election expected next year.

Mr Fritch also called for the creation of a new and united pro-autonomy political party after the fracturing of the pro-French camp.

But reports from Tahiti says all that changed for Mr Flosse a month ago when the ruling coalition, to which his party belongs, collapsed and failed to elect him as the new assembly president.

He reportedly claimed that the alliance was wrecked by his partner, the To Tatou Aia of Gaston Tong Sang, which plans to sell off state-owned entities and place the running of the territory in the hands of the French state.