22 Apr 2013

Frogier castigates New Caledonia's pro-independence politicians

2:26 pm on 22 April 2013

The leader of New Caledonia's Rassemblement-UMP, Pierre Frogier, says the pro-independence politicians are not up to the challenges which the territory needs to tackle.

Speaking at a party congress, he says they talk about independence but even for them, it is a slogan with no meaning.

Mr Frogier says he will address the grassroots directly, if the elected pro-independence leaders are unable to open a dialogue.

He says he wants discussions on a successor agreement to the Noumea Accord, which will enter into its final phase after the 2014 election.

Mr Frogier says he doesn't believe in a referendum on independence, which will only lead to a pro- or anti-French path while there is no majority for independence.

His party's congress came after a major split, with the breakaway Caledonian People's Movement winning the French UMP's backing.