15 Mar 2018

French Polynesia could follow New Caledonia's lead, says Temaru

4:18 pm on 15 March 2018

French Polynesia's opposition pro-independence leader Oscar Temaru says if New Caledonia accedes to full sovereignty this year French Polynesia will follow.

Oscar Temaru

Oscar Temaru Photo: RNZI

Mr Temaru made the comment in Tahiti while hosting the head of the pro-independence Caledonian Union Daniel Goa who lobbied for the support of Mr Temaru's Tavini Huiraatira Party.

Mr Goa has also sought to reassure investors who might be nervous over the outcome of the plebiscite.

He has also asked for support of French Polynesians living in New Caledonia among whom an estimated 9,000 are eligible to vote in the referendum.

Mr Temaru said he plans to go to New Caledonia in September or October to encourage French Polynesians living there to help Kanaks win their independence.

The vote is expected to be held in early November.

New Caledonia has been on the UN decolonisation list since 1986 and French Polynesia since 2013.

France has so far ignored bids by French Polynesia to hold an independence referendum.

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