Tahiti opposition abandons early election ploy

3:11 pm on 3 December 2018

French Polynesia's pro-indepedence opposition Tavini Huiraatira party has abandoned plans to trigger early elections by standing down three of its assembly members.

Voters cast their ballots at a polling station in Tahiti for the French presidential election. Voters in French Polynesia voted in favour of centre-right candidate Francois Fillon.

Photo: AFP

The plan to create vacancies was being discussed in opposition circles in the past week in an attempt to thwart the government's efforts to consolidate the autonomy statute.

The opposition parties said they represent more voters than the ruling party but have fewer seats because of the electoral system.

Oscar Temaru, the Tavini leader who lost his assembly seat over campaign funding irregularities in October, said the resignation idea was dropped because his side didn't master the rules of the game.

Although the electoral law calls for fresh polls in case of mass vacancies, Mr Temaru says decisions rest with France.