12 Jul 2005

French Polynesia party shakes up organisation after losing power

4:26 pm on 12 July 2005

The former ruling party in French Polynesia has held its first congress since losing power earlier this year.

The Tahoeraa Huiraatira's annual congress took place in one of its strongholds - the town of Pirae - near the capital Pape'ete.

The party reworked its own constitution, to create a new position of 'president-delegate'.

The former Vice-President of French Polynesia, Edouard Fritch, was appointed to this new role in the party.

But the 73-year-old Gaston Flosse, who was toppled as French Polynesia's President earlier this year, remains the undisputed president of the party which he founded a quarter of a century ago.

The Tahoeraa spokesman, Yves Haupert, said the election of a party president wasn't on the meeting's agenda, adding it was expected to take place 'probably in November'.