20 Sep 2018

New Caledonia's FLNKS movement accused of including children in referendum voter numbers

2:57 pm on 20 September 2018

New Caledonia's pro-independence FLNKS movement is accused of including Kanak children in its number of prospective voters in the November referendum on independence from France.

The FLNKS flag

Photo: RNZI/ Johnny Blades

The charge comes from the anti-independence Caledonian Republicans after the FLNKS told a news conference that 63 percent of the voters on the restricted roll for the referendum are Kanaks.

According to the analysis of the FLNKS, more than 29,000 people on the list of voters with common law status are Kanaks.

It said they need to be added to the 80,000 people with customary status, which gives Kanaks a majority.

But the Caledonian Republicans said the calculation was bizarre because the FLNKS added children who couldn't vote.

No official figure on the ethnic make-up of the roll has been published but observers say Kanaks are likely to have a small majority on the roll.

Opinion polls show an overwhelming majority is likely to vote against independence from France.

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