12 Aug 2008

French Polynesian senatorial campaign blocked by contradictory election rules

3:48 pm on 12 August 2008

Campaigning in French Polynesia for the two seats in the French senate appears to be suspended after a presumed candidate, Rene Hoffer, discovered inconsistencies in the law and was told that registration won't open until September 1st.

The two senate seats will be decided on September the 21st by an electoral college comprising just under 700 people.

Mr Hoffer says while campaigning was to have started this week, the electoral law says candidates can only hold official campaign meetings once their bid for office has been registered.

He says this has led to a UPSD coalition campaign meeting to be later billed as just a gathering.

"They cannot show up as candidates anymore because they cannot go against the electoral law. So not only would the two candidates and the two co-candidates have faced the possibility of not being able any more to be candidates when it really starts because I would have taken them to court of course but maybe the whole party, the UPSD, would not be able to present their candidates."

Rene Hoffer