29 Aug 2006

French Polynesia's political instability blamed on new electoral system

1:51 pm on 29 August 2006

The president of the French Polynesian assembly, Philip Schyle, says the new electoral system is to blame for the current political instability.

The system was changed in 2004 at the instigation of the then dominant political party, the Tahoeraa Huiraatira of Gaston Flosse.

The key change was to give a third of all seats in an electorate to the party winning most votes and then dividing the remaing two thirds in proportion to the votes cast.

It also created the presidency as an institution separate from the government.

Mr Schyle has told RFO radio that it is possible that the government could again be changed before the scheduled election in 2009 without bringing about stability.

He says the change of the system is to blame for the early general election, the change of government and the cancellation of some the election result.

Mr Schyle says even the Tahoeraa now wants to have the rules changed and do away with the bonus of a third of seats.