Pro-independence leader Roch Wamytan has been re-elected President of the Congress of New Caledonia.
It is Wamytan’s fourth successive term in this position.
He received 29 votes in favour of his re-election and told La Premiere it was thanks to Pacific Awakening’s support.
“First of all, I would like to thank the party Pacific Awakening who have supported us for the fourth time. It is a mark of confidence in the process of reform in which we have placed ourselves, with the president of the government, and for years to come,” he said.
Wamytan’s said the Congress must serve as “the people’s house”, addressing the concerns of all members of the community at a time of economic challenge and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is the fourth consecutive time that Wamytan has won the post, backed by a “Pacific majority” of independence parties and the Wallisian party Eveil océanien. Independence leaders now head the Government and Congress of New Caledonia, and two of three provincial administrations.
The three Congress members from the Pacific Awakening party formally joined the pro-independence Caledonian Union members to form a new group in the legislature. This was registered on Sunday.
The Pacific Awakening party, which holds the balance of power since the 2019 election, had already said it would vote for Wamytan for the sake of stability to progress urgently needed reforms.
The party, which emerged from civil society and represents New Caledonia’s Wallisians and Futunans, has over the years given support to both main political camps to sustain a balance.
The opposition representative Gil Brial has received 25 votes.
A Congressional majority is guaranteed – for now – through two pro-independence parliamentary groups: Union nationale pour l’indépendance (UNI – 11 members) and UC-FLNKS et Nationalistes et l’Eveil Océanien now bolstered to 16 by the three members of EO.
SOURCE:RNZ PACIFIC/ISLANDS BUSINESS