13 Feb 2008

Veteran politician in French Polynesia demands election frontrunner meets to try and form majority

2:26 pm on 13 February 2008

The leader of French Polynesia's Tahoeraa Huiraatira party, Gaston Flosse, has issued an ultimatum to Gaston Tong Sang of the To Tatou Aia coalition to confirm a meeting by this afternoon.

This comes three days after the inconclusive election for a new Assembly.

Walter Zweifel reports from Papeete.

"Gaston Flosse says a stable coalition can be negotiated between the two pro-autonomy parties. But Mr Flosse has released a letter saying that if he fails to get a positive reply by this afternoon he concludes that the To Tatou Aia leader has chosen the path of bribery and blackmail to entice individual Tahoeraa members to defect. Mr Tong Sang is yet to invite party leaders for talks but has issued a public appeal to all assembly members to join him in an apparent bid to trigger defections."