23 Jul 2020

Wamytan re-elected as New Caledonia Congress president

2:28 pm on 23 July 2020

The pro-independence politician Roch Wamytan has been re-elected as the president of New Caledonia's Congress for a one-year term.

Roch Wamytan

Roch Wamytan Photo: AFP

Wamytan of the Caledonian Union secured 29 of the 54 votes in the first round after getting the backing of the three members of the new Pacific Awakening party.

He defeated Gil Brial of the anti-independence Future with Confidence coalition and Magali Manuhalalo of the anti-independence Caledonia Together party.

They secured 19 and six votes each.

Wamytan's re-election means he will be Congress president for a fourth time since 2011.

He welcomed his re-election as a sign that the Congress keeps being led by the Pacific majority.

Pacific Awakening represents mainly ethnic Wallisians and Futunians, although Ms Manuhalalo is also an ethnic Futunian.

Wamytan said he would work towards a Pacific society based on values of sharing, tolerance and benevolence.

His re-election comes less than three months before the next referendum on independence from France.

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