Paris to tidy up French Polynesia statute

4:23 pm on 5 March 2015

The head of the law commission of the French National Assembly says French Polynesia's statute should be tidied up but in the main remain the same.

Jean-Jacques Urvoas

Jean-Jacques Urvoas Photo: AFP

Jean-Jacques Urvoas made the comment in Tahiti after a week of consultations.

He says nobody has called into question the division of power between Paris and Papeete, adding that he is opposed to any suggestion of turning French Polynesia into an associated state.

The idea has been mooted by the leader of the ruling Tahoeraa Huiraatira Party, Gaston Flosse, who has been largely ignored by Mr Urvoas in part because Flosse no longer holds an elected office following his conviction for corruption.

Mr Urvoas says he was shocked at the suggestion that the territorial government should be able to give recommendations to prosecutors.

The territory's pro-independence leader, Oscar Temaru, earlier rejected assessments of Mr Urvoas as colonial.

He says the territory's label as an overseas country has no legal value and it remains an overseas possession that is on the UN list of territories to be decolonised.

Mr Temaru says Mr Urvoas's current work on the statute is nothing but cosmetics on a gangrenous leg.