PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT
Pacific Islands Development Program/East-West Center
Center for Pacific Islands Studies/University of Hawai‘i at Manoa
TUVALU STILL WITHOUT A PRIME MINISTER
FUNAFUTI, Tuvalu (April 22, 1999 - PACNEWS)---Tuvalu is still without a prime minister a week after Bikenibeu Paeniu was ousted in a vote of no confidence.
An official at the Suva-based Tuvalu High Commission said the election of a new Prime Minister had been delayed because the Governor General, Sir Tomasi Puapua, had been out of the country in Auckland, New Zealand, and American Samoa.
Sir Tomasi returned to the Tuvalu capital, Funafuti, yesterday.
The official said there has been no word from Tuvalu on when the Governor General will convene Parliament to elect a new Prime Minister.
Meantime, Paeniu is Acting Prime Minister of a caretaker government.
He was ousted by the 12-member Parliament after an Opposition MP, Vaitupu Koloa Talake, moved a motion of no confidence.
The motion highlighted allegations about Paeniu’s private life and the slow progress on some Government projects, which according to Talake’s assessment was not satisfactory.
A new Prime Minister is likely to be named next week.