7 Nov 2011

Final seat decided in Kiribati election

4:17 pm on 7 November 2011

The final MP in the Kiribati elections has been decided after Christmas Island's third seat went to a third run off vote on Thursday.

Jacob Teem has retained his seat by just 27 votes ahead of his opponent Rutio Bangao.

Mr Teem's election brings the tally of re-elected MPs to thirty out of the 44 seats in the parliament.

A development worker on Kiribati, John Anderson, says lobbying has begun for the presidency which is likely to be fought over Taiwanese and Chinese aid, copra prices and pensions.

"It's all very vague. We do have one opposition group saying it's going to raise copra prices and that effects the outer island communities because it's a staple income. There's some talk of raising the pensions of the elderly. What the opposition's saying is time for change."

Kiribati development worker John Anderson