26 Mar 2013

Vanuatu terminates appointment of roving ambassador to Russia

9:27 pm on 26 March 2013

Vanuatu's new Minister of Foreign Affairs, Edward Natapei, has terminated the appointment of Ti Tam Goiset as roving ambassador for Vanuatu to Russia and Eastern countries.

Mr Natapei, who is also Deputy Prime Minister, has cited irregularities in the appointment of Ms Goiset as the reason for the termination.

Ms Goiset was appointed last year by the former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alfred Carlot, but Mr Natapei said until her termination, Russia and other Eastern countries never confirmed their acceptance.

Mr Natapei has also instructed the Department of Foreign Affairs to revoke Ms Goiset's diplomatic passport.

Since her appointment last year, it is understood that Ms Goiset never travelled to Russia or Eastern countries.

Mr Natapei had laid down concerns over Ms Goiset's role as diplomat as part of the reasons for a motion of no confidence filed against Prime Minister Sato Kilman last week.

The motion was not debated in parliament, following the sudden resignation of Mr Kilman.

However, the motion by the then Natapei-led opposition questioned the close links between Ms Goiset and Mr Kilman.

Mr Kilman's government was questioned in parliament over a contractual provision for a commission the ambassador would receive on any foreign funding secured for Vanuatu.