20 Aug 2009

Vanuatu opposition leader says he'd support female Head of State

3:41 pm on 20 August 2009

The leader of Vanuatu's opposition, Sato Kilman, says it would be open to supporting the nomination of a woman candidate for the country's president.

An electoral College made up of the 52 members of Vanuatu's parliament and the presidents of the six provincial governments are scheduled to elect the new President on September the 1st.

This comes after Kalkot Mataskelekele's term as Head of State ended last weekend.

While the government has not yet decided on a single candidate to nominate, local media reported that the Prime Minister Edward Natapei's coalition may rally their support behind a female candidate.

Mr Kilman says he'd have no objection to this.

"There will be people who will be considering our custom and tradition and things, the other people will say 'it will be difficult to accept a female as Head of State'. I don't think so. I will support a female Head of State, in fact I have mentioned to the Prime Minister that we will support one if it's the right candidate. But I guess that's really up to the PM now whether he takes it up or not."

Sato Kilman