7 Jun 2019

New Caledonia politics 'absurd' says Frogier

10:34 am on 7 June 2019

The French Senate has been told that the political situation in New Caledonia has become absurd after last week's election of a pro-independence Congress president, Roch Wamytan.

A leading anti-independence New Caledonian politician, Pierre Frogier.

New Caledonia politician Pierre Frogier Photo: AFP

Pierre Frogier, who is a New Caledonian member of the French Senate, has now asked Paris if it supports a new referendum on independence from France as soon as possible.

He said after the victory of the anti-independence parties in last month's provincial elections, the situation for a majority of New Caledonians has become incomprehensible or even intolerable.

Mr Frogier said a game of alliances, in which the new Pacific Awakening Party unexpectedly sided with the pro-independence side, saw Mr Wamytan's election.

He said this voting pattern favouring the pro-independence camp may be repeated in the days to come when a new government and president will have to be elected.

The French overseas minister Annick Girardin has told Mr Frogier that if one third of members of New Caledonia's Congress want another referendum France will organise it.

The decolonisation roadmap under the Noumea Accord provides for two more possible independence referendums by 2022.

In last year's referendum, just over 56 percent voted for the status quo.

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