19 Nov 2008

A French Polynesia veteran politician accuses French government of hypocrisy

11:35 am on 19 November 2008

A French Polynesia's veteran politician, Gaston Flosse, has accused the French government of hypocrisy and lying in its plans to reform the pension system.

Mr Flosse, who is a member of the French senate, made the accusation as the French legislature is finalising the cuts and amid a strike by public servants in Tahiti in protest at the reform.

Mr Flosse has told the Senate that the junior minister in charge of overseas territories, Yves Jego, has based his reform project on two lies.

He says the reform is being justified because of a few French opportunists abusing the system but he says the victims will be the locals in the overseas territories.

Mr Flosse says Mr Jego is wrong to say that pays in the public sector are topped up to attract people from France and not linked to the high cost of living.

He says if the minister was right, the top-ups would not have to be paid to local employees.