8 Dec 2009

Tahiti chiefs want Sarkozy to order fresh elections

2:35 pm on 8 December 2009

The customary council in French Polynesia has written an open letter to the French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, asking him to halt what it calls the tragicomedy of local politics.

The letter, which is endorsed by 22 council members, says the territory cannot continue in its spiral of political recklessness which will bankrupt the country and make it appear ridiculous in the eyes of the world.

It calls on Mr Sarkozy to renew the territory's statute and organise fresh elections that will put in place men and women able to face up to the crisis.

Not to act, the letter says, would be an insult.

Last month, a no-confidence motion ousted the fourth government formed since last year's early election called by France in a bid to increase political stability.

The new administration is believed to have a majority of one, with one assembly last weekend switching sides twice in one day.