25 Aug 2008

Small French Polynesian party joins French senate race

1:33 pm on 25 August 2008

French Polynesia's small Porinetia Ora party has chosen two candidates for next month's French senate election after saying earlier this year that it was going to skip the contest.

The party leader, Teiva Manutahi, has told local television that French Polynesia's political class needs to be renewed and therefore not the same people should be chosen to sit in the Senate.

Mr Manutahi says to put back in power those who have ruled the territory for years won't win the respect of the people.

An electoral college made up of about 700 will choose the two senators on September the 21st.

Mr Manutahi has called for a new statute and a dissolution of the territorial assembly to hold fresh elections for a new majority to emerge.

French Polynesia has had three governments this year and an election was held in February under a new electoral system.