Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 4 September 2015

The Opposition is preparing to deposit a motion against the Prime Minister, Radio Vanuatu news tells us today. Eighteen members of Parliament on the Opposition side have agreed and they are trying to find support from Government MPs. The main reason is the bribery case in which allegations have been raised against 16 MPs amongst whom 5 are state ministers. This, they say, is giving Vanuatu a bad name both regionally and in the world. A total of 37 signatures will be needed. Prime Minister Kilman is in China for the 70th anniversary of the Chinese victory over Japan at the end of the Second World War. The PMO has made no statement concerning the many allegations against those of cabinet rank within his Government, including the Acting Prime Minister and Acting Head of State. Nor has there been any official reaction to the Finance Minister’s plea of "Guilty" in the Bribery Case.

Further to what the Digest has already reported, the Acting Head of State Marcellino Pipite, following his visit to New York to meet ambassadors from countries adopting the Westminster system, Speaker Pipite observed that Vanuatu has shifted away from the Westminster system. This has meant "too many cases that have seen MPs and political parties seeking court decisions." Pipite adds "It is my intention to invite members of the Westminster System, preferably from the United Kingdom, to come to Vanuatu and provide insight to MPs on the procedures, and how the system operates, in order to bring Vanuatu back on track of the system we inherited in 1980." (Daily Post, 2 September)

Wednesday’s Post has the Reunification Group (VP, NUP, MPP and Nagriamel) all in agreement to support the VP candidate in the election in October to replace the late Edward Natapei, former Leader of the Opposition. Graon mo Jastis Pati leader Ralph Regenvanu was present as present Leader of the Opposition, Ham Lini, made the announcement. MP Lini also suggested that if a consensus could be reached, the Reunification Group would like to see the VP candidate (Kenneth Natapei) elected unopposed, saving the Government considerable money.

Daily Post this week also reported a horrendous traffic accident in which three Onesua students had to be hospitalised in Vila after their drunken driver crashed their vehicle near the Siviri field. They were travelling on the open flatbed of the truck and bags of cement landed on top of them.

Today’s Daily Post has water costs being reduced by 6% as of today. The decrease in energy prices has enabled the reduction.