18 Apr 2003

Cook Islands group looks for more political reforms

10:49 am on 18 April 2003

The Cook Islands Group for Political Change is now targeting party hopping in the hope of reducing instability in the country's government.

The Cooks has had six changes of Government in four years.

So far the Group's campaign has prompted MPs to plan amendments to trim their superannuation, and to shorten the Parliamentary term.

And earlier this week, the MPs agreed to abolish the Overseas seat.

The Group for Political Change's Elizabeth Ponga says now the focus is on party hopping.

"We have had enough of government forming coalitions when they feel and at their own discretion. By doing so it leaves the country in a state of instability and at the same time, if we want investment from outside, we can't get that because who would be prepared to invest in a country that is unstable.?"

Elizabeth Ponga says they have been assured that draft legislation to force an MP to resign if he or she jumps parties will be presented when Parliament resumes in early May.

She says they will also want the MPs to reduce the discretionary funds made available to each of them.