5 Sep 2003

Vanuatu newspaper publisher seeks sacking of government official after being assaulted

10:22 am on 5 September 2003

A Vanuatu newspaper publisher is calling for the chairman of the Vanuatu maritime Authority, Christophe Emele, to be sacked, saying he is not fit to hold the post.

Mark Neil Jones, the publisher of the only independent daily newspaper, the Daily Post, made the call after he was physically assaulted by a group of Mr Emele's supporters, while the VMA chairman looked on.

The newspaper's staff have also been threatened following a series of articles raising concerns at the way the VMA is being run under Mr Emele's chairmanship.

"As far as we are concerned, Christophe Emele is systematically destroying the VMA and something needs to be done. We will be taking police action over the assault and Christophe Emele was watching it while it happened and it's the final straw. It's just getting ridiculous. He is obviously not fit to hold that position."