Call to make Tahitian an official language

2:09 pm on 31 July 2018

French Polynesia's biggest church wants the native Te Reo Maohi to be made an official language.

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A week-long synod of the Protestant Church has concluded with a call to recognise the indigenous language.

The church is arguing that all peoples have a right to their own language.

The French constitution only recognises French as an official language and earlier this year, the law commission in Paris threw out a bid by a French Polynesian member for a change.

The church president Taarii Maraea said although he knows the provisions of the French constitution, he is a Maohi person and would like his language to be recognised as an official one.

He said a language disappears every day.

Mr Maraea said the synod has also called for France to apologise to the indigenous people for nuclear weapons testing.

Two years ago, it decided to take France to the International Criminal Court for alleged crimes against humanity committed with the tests.