22 Jan 2015

Fresh New Caledonia presidential election bid

11:39 am on 22 January 2015

New Caledonia's government is due to meet shortly in a fresh bid to elect a president.

The territory has been without a president for five weeks after the government led by Cynthia Ligeard collapsed amid disagreements within the anti-independence camp.

Although the same 11-member government was re-elected on New Year's Eve, the ministers could not agree on who should be the president.

The French High Commissioner in New Caledonia has convened a fresh meeting today in the hope the deadlock can be broken because without a president, the government is in caretaker mode only.

Mrs Ligeard is seeking re-election while the rival Caledonia Together Party has nominated Philippe Germain as its candidate.

To be chosen, a candidate has to get the backing of at least six of the 11 government members.

Philippe Germain and Cynthia Ligeard

Philippe Germain and Cynthia Ligeard Photo: THEO ROUBY / AFP