French Polynesia's Temaru pushes for 'Maohi Nui' in EU poll

2:03 pm on 28 March 2019

French Polynesia's pro-independence leader has called for the European parliament election in May to be used as part of a push for independence from France.

Oscar Temaru

Oscar Temaru Photo: RNZI

Oscar Temaru said voters should use the occasion to cast a ballot paper which says 'Maohi Nui' as a peaceful sign of expression for his cause.

Mr Temaru has also asked the French authorities to count the number of such ballot papers to gauge support for an independent Maohi Nui.

He said the European election has little importance for Tahiti and turnout is usually very low.

To date, no referendum has been held on whether French Polynesia should become independent despite it being on the UN decolonisation list.

Mr Temaru has again spoken out against what he sees as a lack of the rule of law, saying the territory is still in a colonial state.

He said his Tavini Huiraatira party has called a meeting this weekend to shore up this election strategy.

Last year, Mr Temaru lost his assembly seat after his campaign accounts were rejected.

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