2 Aug 2013

Motion of no confidence debate underway in Tuvalu

1:40 pm on 2 August 2013

Tuvalu's parliament has resumed debating a motion of no confidence in the government of Willie Telavi.

This comes after days of political tension and orders from the governor general, Sir Italeli Iakoba, for parliament to meet despite the government announcing an adjournment on Wednesday.

The opposition leader, Enele Sopoaga, says he was appointed acting prime minister by the governor general specifically to see through the motion on the vote of no confidence.

The opposition has wanted to hold this vote since a by-election victory last month gave it a majority, which has been further extended by a resignation on the government side.

Mr Sopoaga says there was some focus this morning on the governor general's ruling but he says the government cannot challenge a proclamation by the head of state.

He says it is very satisfying that the no confidence motion is now being debated

"Now the motion of course is going to be addressing the same question - who is holding the majority confidence of parliament to be government, of course with a new prime minister or a properly elected prime minister."

Mr Sopoaga says the governor general has also ordered parliament to meet on Saturday to elect a new prime minister, if needed.