13 Jun 2011

France hopes for stabiity after fourth New Caledonia election this year

4:11 am on 13 June 2011

The French high commissioner in Noumea, Albert Dupuy, says he hopes New Caledonia will now have a stable collegial government.

On Friday, the Congress re-elected Harold Martin of the anti-independence Future Together Party as new president and the pro-independence politician Gilbert Tyuienon as vice-president.

The two were elected three times before this year but their administration collapsed every time within minutes because the Caledonia Together Party resigned from the collegial body.

On Thursday, the 11 government members will meet again to assign the portfolios amid a threat by Caledonia Together to resign for a fourth time this year if it fails to be attributed ministries it thinks it deserves.

To stop the serial resignations, France has initiated a change to the electoral law to give any new government an 18-month grace period but that law won't be ready for another month.