5 May 2005

Veteran New Caledonia leader to quit politics

5:33 pm on 5 May 2005

New Caledonia's veteran politician, Jacques Lafleur, is to step down as an MP at the end of his parliamentary term.

The newspaper, Les Nouvelles Caledoniennes, reports Mr Lafleur as saying his opinions are no longer taken into consideration on how the leadership of his Rassemblement party can regain power in the territory.

The newspaper says Mr Lafleur confirmed that he's quitting politics in a letter sent to party officials at the end of last month.

The letter says since he stepped down from the leadership of the party in January, promises have been broken, and there's been infighting, plotting and betrayals.

Mr Lafleur says he thanks everyone who's been faithful to him and he wishes all the best to the party leaders.