3 Dec 2010

Puna hopes George will stay with Cook Islands Party

4:14 pm on 3 December 2010

The Cooks Islands Prime Minister says he hopes MP Norman George remains within the Cook Islands Party, despite his threat to consider all his options if he was left out of cabinet.

Mr Puna says he's disappointed by some of Mr George's recent statements, which included questioning his suitability to be Prime Minister

"I felt that his comments were unnecessary coming as it did so soon after the elections when the party was enjoying its resounding victory. It wasn't only disappointing for the party but I felt disappointed for the wider community as well because they had the expectation that that sort of politics has been left behind in our country."

Henry Puna says Norman George knew the Cook Islands Party constitution states that the party leader automatically becomes prime minister if the party is elected to power.

He says it won't be a major setback for the government if Mr George leaves as his party has a sizeable majority.