1 Apr 2011

French Polynesia assembly to debate no confidence motion

9:08 am on 1 April 2011

The French Polynesian assembly has begun discussing a no confidence motion against the government of Gaston Tong Sang, who has the support of only nine of the assembly's 57 members.

Amid a deepening economic and political crisis, employers and unions have given the political class a two-week ultimatum to sort out the budget and draw up a plan for the territory

Walter Zweifel reports.

"The pro-independence party led by Oscar Temaru says the motion is the last chance for the territory to get out of its malaise. The party justifies its move by pointing at the dispute over the legality of the budget and the new charges laid against Mr Tong Sang last week over a business contract. With all political combinations having been tried and failed, it's uncertain Mr Temaru's side can attract 29 votes to pass the motion which would make him the president for a fifth time in seven years. After a week of lobbying, he still appears one vote short. All the while, all politicians are warned of a public revolt."