French Polynesia election voting begins on Sunday

10:19 am on 11 April 2023
no caption

Voters will elect a new 57-member assembly for a five-year term. Photo: RNZ

Campaigning for French Polynesia's territorial elections has entered its final week.

Dressed in their parties' respective colours, supporters of several parties held small rallies at the Papeete weekend market.

In two rounds of voting - on Sunday, April 16 and Sunday, April 30 - voters will elect a new 57-member assembly for a five-year term.

A total of seven lists are contesting the elections.

Under the proportional system introduced in 2011, a list needs the support of at least 12.5 percent of the votes to make it to the second round.

The list winning most votes in the second round will get a third of all seats as a bonus.

The remaining two thirds will then be distributed according to the lists' relative strength.

Observers say only the ruling Tapura Huiraatira and the pro-independence Tavini Huiraatira stand a chance of winning, given their presence across the island groups.

The last time French Polynesian voters went to the poll was in 2018.

President Edouard Fritch of the Tapura Huiraatira has held the territory's top job since 2014.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs