The pro-independence Roch Wamytan has been re-elected for the fifth time in succession as President of the Congress of New Caledonia. The Congress shares legislative power with the National Assembly in Paris. Elections are held every year.
The independentists do not have a majority in Congress. To win the presidency, they have joined forces with a small party with three elected members, l’Éveil océanien. This party, which is largely made up of Wallisians and Futunians, is something of a political UFO. It has only been in existence for five years. Its leader, the mathematician Milakulo Tukumuli, is not pro-independence. The majority of Wallisians and Futunians are not pro-independence either. However, the party is not closing the door on independence. L’Éveil océanien believes that Caledonia is not ready for independence. Its slogan sums up its philosophy: “No, not now”.
75% of texts voted unanimously
Milakulo Tukumuli explained that New Caledonia needed stability and that this was not the time to change the political balance. He was elected President of the important Permanent Commission of the Congress. The fact that a pro-independence member is at the head of Congress makes little difference, since 75% of the texts are passed unanimously. Independents and Loyalists therefore vote in the same way most of the time.
Off to Paris…
To describe this coalition, President Wamytan (and Grand Chief of the Saint-Louis tribe) speaks of an Oceanian majority. Immediately after the meeting, the main elected representatives boarded a plane to negotiate with the French government. The elected representatives will have to determine what links Caledonia will have with France in the years to come.
The discussions promise to be tough