14 Apr 2014

Niue Premier may lose control of the house after weekend election

7:16 am on 14 April 2014

The Premier of Niue has failed to gain a majority in the house of parliament at the weekend's general election.

Toke Talagi lost the top spot on the common roll - beaten by businessman Stanley Kalauni, who last year said the premier was "going bananas" over proposing an asylum seekers camp on Niue.

Analysts on Niue say Mr Talagi no longer has a stronghold over the 20-member parliament, with only 10 seats under his control, with Mr Kalauni likely to have the support of the other half of the house.

Two village seats could be the deciding factor in who will lead the tiny island nation with a population of 1200 for the next three years.

For the past three years there has not been a co-ordinated opposition group to challenge the Talagi regime but by early next week the numbers could well favour new leadership and a revised three-member Cabinet.