28 May 2013

Nauru leader declares state of emergency

4:52 am on 28 May 2013

The president of Nauru, Sprent Dabwido, has declared a State of Emergency, saying it is needed to allow his government access to Treasury funds and to bring the date of the election forward by two weeks.

In a state of the nation address Mr Dabwido says now that parliament is dissolved the State of Emergency is needed to release treasury funds for departmental use and overseas medical referrals as well as to buy food supplies for the hospital.

He told the island the declaration was also necessary to bring forward by two weeks the date for the general elections.

He says it will now be on June the 8th.

Mr Dabwido had advised the Speaker more than 3 weeks ago to dissolve parliament but the Speaker, Godfrey Thoma, refused to do this since the advice had not been debated, and could not be since Mr Dabwido ensured his group of MPs boycotted parliament denying it a quorum.

Mr Thoma eventually dissolved parliament last week but Mr Dabwido says the delay will cause a clash with the budget process so the vote has to be earlier.