9 Jan 2019

Cooks Democrats confident of retaining Ivirua seat

2:11 pm on 9 January 2019

The turbulence of recent months in Cook Islands politics is set to continue with the opposition Democratic Party confident it can win a by-election on January 21.

Cook Islands Democratic Party leader, Tina Browne

Cook Islands Democratic Party leader, Tina Browne Photo: Cook Islands Democratic Party

The party leader, Tina Browne, has taken the Rakahanga seat after a court decision removed the Cook Islands Party's Toka Hagai, who had won it in the June election.

Mr Hagai was found to have treated a number of voters prior to the poll.

This month's Ivirua by-election follows the death of Democratic Party MP, Tony Armstrong, and Ms Browne said the party is confident it can hold on to that seat.

This would give the Democrats 12 seats in the 24 seat parliament but Ms Browne said efforts are being made by both groupings to woo people and secure a majority.

"There's talk, all sorts of talk, going on at the moment about negotiations that are happening behind closed doors on either side, on both sides, so it would be naive to think that there's no attempt by the Cook Islands Party to lure some of our Democratic Party members onto their side," Ms Brown said.

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