28 Nov 2016

French Pacific defies Fillon sweep

12:05 pm on 28 November 2016
French Presidential hopeful Alain Juppé speaking to media in French Polynesia.

Alain Juppé on a visit to Papeete earlier this year. Photo: RNZI / Amelie David

Voters in French Polynesia and Wallis and Futuna have defied the trends and given Alain Juppé the most votes in the second round of the Republicans' primaries for next year's French presidential election.

The party's nomination, however, has been won by François Fillon, who is also a former prime minister.

Former French prime minister Francois Fillon.

The French Pacific territories, except New Caledonia, have defied Françoi Fillon's sweep of the Republican primaries. Photo: AFP

According to early results, Mr Fillon received 66.8 percent of the vote, and Mr Juppé 33.2 percent. Mr Fillion will go on to contest the two-round presidential elections in April and May, most likely against the far-right National Front leader Marine Le Pen.

In French Polynesia, Mr Juppé, where he is backed by the ruling Tapura Huiraatira Party, won 53 percent of the vote.

In several constituencies, he scored more than 80 percent.

Mr Fillon secured 45 percent in the second round.

In the first round last week, Mr Juppé also won most votes and Mr Fillon was a distant third.

In New Caledonia, Mr Fillon won almost 78 percent of the votes and Mr Juppe just 22 percent.

In the first round, Nicolas Sarkozy came out on top but France-wide he was third and thus eliminated.