29 Apr 2008

French Polynesian strike threat over politicians' deals

1:15 pm on 29 April 2008

French Polynesia's A Tia i Mua union has threatened to launch a general strike and block the assembly over what it calls the immorality of the political class.

This comes as the government formed in the past two weeks is faced with a possible motion of no confidence as assembly members continue to be prepared to switch sides.

The general secretary of A Tia i Mua, Jean Marie Yan Tu, has told local radio that the union has had enough and wants politicians to get to work.

No date has been given for the threatened strike.

Meanwhile, a senior member of the ruling To Tatou Aia coalition, Jean Christophe Bouissou, has spoken out in favour of a government reshuffle this week to accommodate Louis Frebault as a minister.

His wife, Joelle Frebault, who is an assembly member from the Marquesas islands, has been in talks with the opposition in an apparent bid to add pressure on the president, Gaston Tong Sang, to give her husband a ministry.

Mr Tong Sang won power two weeks ago after two assembly members joined his side from within the ranks of the ruling coalition.

Close relatives of the two defectors have subsequently been made ministers.