18 Dec 2014

New Caledonia's Gomes labelled absolute monarch

1:26 pm on 18 December 2014

The head of New Caledonia's collapsed government, Cynthia Ligeard, has singled out a rival anti-independence politician, Philippe Gomes, over the demise of the government just six months into its five-year term.

Philippe Gomes

Philippe Gomes Photo: AFP

In a newspaper interview with Les Nouvelles Caledoniennes and in her first comment since the collapse, Mrs Ligeard accused the leader of the Caledonia Together Party of dreaming of being an absolute monarch who wants to control everything.

The ministers of the Caledonia Together Party resigned this week amid disagreements over fiscal policy, triggering the automatic end of the government and prompting a fresh election by the Congress before the end of the year.

Mrs Ligeard's party colleagues in Congress refused to back part of the tax reform, which led to the walk-out by Caledonia Together, but she says the party responded like firefighting arsonists.

She says while the party led by Mr Gomes is the biggest anti-independence party, it has no majority in Congress or in the collegial government.

She says the power-sharing deal among the three anti-independence factions covering the government, Congress and the southern province has now ended.

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