Vanuatu Daily News Digest | PM wants snap election

Prime Minister Kilman has stated through the national broadcaster that he has met with President Baldwin Lonsdale to give the Government’s view that the Head of State should dissolve Parliament. Elections should be called to resolve the present political crisis. The PM has just lost 5 members of his Cabinet (CoM) and 14 government supporting MPs following the Bribery Case. Kilman said he had met with Ham Lini and Ralph Regenvanu of the Opposition with a view to their strengthening the government side. That possible solution did not work out, Kilman stated. The PM claimed his solution was in the interests of the nation, not of any political grouping.

The Vanuatu Daily News Digest would here remind readers that when a motion of no confidence was voted to remove the Carcasses government, a worthwhile and undisputed 33 MPs supported Joe Natuman as Prime Minister of Vanuatu until he was toppled in June. There has been no indication of diminution of support for his unification moves (VP, NUP, GJP) and the grouping has not suffered any convictions. The present PM accepted a ministry in the Natuman Government. A national snap election at this time would be hugely expensive and the Electoral Office has expressed concern about the loss of voters’ registrations cards along with other personal papers in cyclone Pam.

Police are starting investigations of three further MPs allegedly involved in the Bribery Case. The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) stated an official report has named the MP for Tafea Outer Islands John Tesei, Ambae MP Richard Mera and former Speaker and Maewo MP Philip Boedoro as being those concerned. Further large sums of money are alleged to have been received from jailed MP Moana Carcasses by these MPs. The Prime Minister’s Office says regardless of their immunity under the Prosecutions Act following their testimony, there are still MPs whose cases must go to court. (Radio Vanuatu)

According to national radio this morning, the PMO has also complained about rumours circulating which are simply not true. Apparently rumours have alleged one of the convicted MPs has died in custody.


One Comment on “Vanuatu Daily News Digest | PM wants snap election”

  1. Sue Farran says:

    I wonder if offering ministerial posts to relatively inexperienced MPs to induce them to support a minority government is not also a form of bribery, distinguishable for example, from a cabinet reshuffle among senior members of the existing government? The Penal Code says ‘No person shall corruptly give or offer or agree to give any bribe to any person with intent to influence any public officer in respect of any act or omission by him in his official capacity.’ The Oxford dictionary describes a bribe as ‘an offer … Money etc offered to procure …. action or decision in favour of the giver’. Hmmm. What a tangled web of law and politics in Vanuatu.

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