7 Sep 2009

Doubts surround planned Tahiti coronation

2:42 pm on 7 September 2009

There is growing resistance in French Polynesia to plans by one of the claimants of the Tahitian royal title, Joinville Pomare, to be made king this week.

Several traditional associations say they want to stop the planned installation of King Pomare XI in the Tahiti valley of Papenoo.

According to a local newspaper, Mr Pomare has now put off the ceremony until early October as more family members speak out against his claim, decrying it as an indecent self-glorification.

Another member of the Pomare family, Yvannah Pomare, says she has the backing of relatives to be only heir to the title, adding the Joinville's mother was not a Pomare.

The family group says it declined to react to his announcement about the planned royal installation earlier this year because it considered that ceremony to be a masquerade.

Supporters of Joinville Pomare are to meet tomorrow to determine what action they will take in the face of the opposition.

In 1880, King Pomare V signed a treaty with France to allow Paris to govern the archipelago but France no longer recognises any Tahitian royalty.

Another man claiming to be the heir to the royal title, Tauatomo Mairau, has been told that the official documents recognising him as the Prince Royal are the result of clerical errors.