11 Feb 2013

Vanuatu MP to appeal decision on his electoral petition against PM as nonsense

2:36 pm on 11 February 2013

The Vanuatu MP, Willie Jimmy, says the Supreme Court decision to strike out his electoral petition against Prime Minister, Sato Kilman, failed to address the issue at the heart of the matter.

The petition challenged Mr Kilman's eligibility to contest the last election, alleging the prime minister hadn't settled his outstanding debt to the government.

Other candidates were made to settle their debts before being allowed to stand.

Justice Robert Spear ruled that Mr Jimmy was ineligible to file the petition because he isn't from the same constituency as the prime minister.

Mr Jimmy plans to appeal.

"We hope to lodge the appeal some time this week on the basis of law only. We understand the election dispute petitions cannot be appealed against whilst the Supreme Court makes a ruling. But with this one, the substantive matter is still there but this is a ruling on the technicality on the section that is used to judge this case."

Vanuatu MP Willie Jimmy