30 Jul 2013

Vanuatu orders people to stop misusing national flag

1:15 pm on 30 July 2013

As Vanuatu celebrates its independence, the government has ordered its citizens to stop misusing the country's flag.

The Vanuatu Daily Post reports the prime minister Moana Carcasses is concerned that businesses are using the flag for commercial purposes without permission from authorities.

The prime minister has asked the minister of internal affairs, Patrick Crowby, to take action.

Mr Crowby has given shopkeepers three weeks to remove any unlawful representation of the flag on merchandise such as clothes and beanies, as well as stickers on vans and taxis.

He says the State Flag and Armorial Bearing Act includes fines for improper use, of up to 520 US dollars.

Today marks the 33rd anniversary of independence for Vanuatu.