19 Jul 2017

Santa re-elected as New Caledonia Congress president

1:34 pm on 19 July 2017

New Caledonia's Congress has re-elected Thierry Santa as its president for a third term.

The anti-independence camp had two candidates in today's contest, but Gregoire Bernut was eliminated in the first round of voting.

In the run-off against the pro-independence side's Roch Wamytan, Mr Santa won 29 of the 54 votes to be re-elected.

Mr Wamytan had previously served two terms as Congress president.

Philippe Dunoyer has been chosen as vice-president.

During Mr Santa's term, the Congress is due to organise an independence referendum as the 1998 Noumea Accord expires.

The accord provided for a 20-year decolonisation process with a phased and irreversible transfer of power from France to New Caledonia.