The Speaker of Kiribati's Parliament Teatao Teannaki has died of a heart attack, aged 80.
Radio Kiribati said Mr Teannaki was at a debate of a hot and controversial issue when he collapsed.
Mr Teannaki had just returned from an overseas trip representing the country in his role as Speaker.
He had served as President of Kiribati from 1991 until 1994 and has been MP for his home island of Abaiang until his defeat in the general elections earlier this year.
He was sworn in as the new Speaker of Parliament in February.