27 Apr 2012

Temaru defends decolonisation letter to French Polynesians

12:19 pm on 27 April 2012

The French Polynesian president says a letter promoting decolonisation didn't violate the campaigning rules for last weekend's French presidential elections.

Oscar Temaru made the comment after local media reported that the polls in the territory could be annulled because of a complaint by a rival and former French Polynesian president, Gaston Tong Sang.

Mr Tong Sang claimed that Mr Temaru's party is formally allied to the French Socialists and distributing the letter widely in public places on the eve of the poll was unlawful, prompting him to seek a ruling from the French constitutional court.

But Mr Temaru says the letter made no reference to any presidential candidate or the election itself.

He has also rejected claims of abusing public funds, saying the thousands of copies of the letter was paid for by his party.