Niue premier confident on re-election
Niue caretaker premier says he is confident on re-election and will introduce policy reforms and invest in tourism in his next term.
The caretaker Premier of Niue says he will introduce a number of policy reforms and put more money into tourism to develop the island if re-elected for another term.
Toke Talagi says the results from the elections are 12 seats on his side and eight to the opposition in the 20-member assembly.
He says the new assembly is yet to vote on who will take the premier or speaker role, and the cabinet line-up is yet to be finalised.
He says that will be done next week.
Mr Talagi told Mary Baines he hopes to change the way people see the developments in Niue and will plan as far ahead as 2050.
TOKE TALAGI: I was very pleased with the outcome of the election. Clearly after the elections, it was clear to me that the people of Niue want the government to continue. With the seat of Toi we've got 12, so finalised things will be discussed and then meeting on Wednesday to vote in a speaker and new premier.
MARY BAINES: So what challenges do you think you're going to face this term?
TT: We've gone through a number of major reforms, which we hope will change the way that people see the developments of Niue - from what it was from the 1960s, to what we see as the future in 2020, 2030, 2050. We're changing the public service, we're changing the models that we're using for government businesses, we're also spending, investing a lot of money into tourism, to use it as a driver as the economic growth that we see happening and will continue to grow. And also some of the other minor reforms, with respect to salary pay scales for professional technical people for example that we need to address, because we continue to have them drifting from their professional training to other areas in the government.
And the other thing is that we're also just looking at refining some of the things that we've been doing, determining whether the four-day week has been helpful to the population as we thought it should, and determining whether we should continue with those things. As I say, at the moment the focus is population. And all of those things I have been talking about in fact focuses on the population of Niue. Because we continue to talk about population, I said to caucus as well as to people here, enough talk about population, let's try to do something to address that issue rather than continue to worry about it. So that's what we've been doing over the past three years, and we will continue to follow those particular policies over the next three years.
MB: And are you planning on bringing back the asylum seeker debate?
TT: I thought that was dead. The Australians didn't agree, we've agreed with their assessments so therefore it's no longer a part of anything that we're doing at the present moment, no. Some people try to use it as a major concern we have with in the Pacific. We do have asylum seekers here, that's one thing that I can't understand about people, we do have asylum seekers here on the island. So I don't understand why people see that as being very different. But never mind, that's just perception on people's part.
Toke Talagi will face a challenge for the leadership from prominent businessman, Stanley Kalauni.
To embed this content on your own webpage, cut and paste the following: