Special Coverage: Niue Elections

Talagi Retains Leadership Role

Toke Talagi has been re-elected premier of Niue by 11 votes to 8 over rival Togia Sioneholo who was backed by Terry Coe's group.
His win followed the appointment of Ahohiva Levi as Speaker of the House over John Operator Siakia, a former member of parliament and niue public service commissioner.
Talagi will now select his three person Cabinet. He is expected to retain the finance , tourism and police portfolios.
With one MP absent - Talagi backer Dion Taufiti of Toi - the premier is likely to hold a 12 vote majority in the House.
Coe is hoping to hold this group of 8 to form a strong Opposition likely to immediately press for better wages across the board, road maintenance and improved basic services.
Talagi is keen to implement the NZAid backed tourism development scheme and sound financial policies.
The Cabinet faces the introduction of a new 2011/2012 Budget within the next two months which is expected to top $NZ20m.

Monday, 9 May 2011

Election Loser Jailed.

Violence erupted in one village, after Niues General Election on Saturday, when the family of a losing candidate, assault the re elected MPs son and family before burning their family home to the ground, ending with an arrest of four people including the losing candidate.
A first report of Election conflicts on the island was made more famous by the fact, that a Senior Observer of the Forum Secretariat arrived for the first time ever, to monitor the islands Elections.
Chief of Police Mark Chennery told reporters, the matter is still under investigation, but the four arrested will face the islands local court judges on the 17th of May, for their part in the conflict.
Another matter that will submit to the judges in a couple of weeks, include an electorate, who’s sitting MP got ousted by an unknown local weaver by one vote.
With the provisional results causing so much chaos, it is a waiting game, on what will happen once the Official results are released in a couple of days.

Four New Members In Assembly.

May 8, 2011

Voters on Niue selected three new common roll members and one new village representative in the country's general election on Saturday.
The results are still unofficial but top poller in the common roll was Toke Talagi who may be challenged for the premiership when the Assembly meets to elect a new leader. One contestant for the top job could be former Cabinet Minister Togia Sioneholo. Lobbying is likely to get underway today.
In Makefu village Tofua Puletama was ousted by Salilo Tongia by a slim margin. At Hakupu former premier Young Vivian staved off challenges from Michael Jackson and Malua Jackson.

Unofficial village results:
Hakupu - Young Vivian re-elected
Lakepa - Kupa Magatogia relected
Mutalau - Bill Vakaafi  re -elected
Toi - Dion Taufitu - re elected
Hikutavake - Opili Talafasi  re-elected
Makefu - Salilo Tongia - new MP  defeating Tofua Puletama and Charlie Tohovaka.
Alofi North Vaainga Tukuitonga -  re -elected
Alofi South - Dalton Tagelagi - re elected.
Re-elected unopposed:
Tamakoutoga - Peter Funaki
Avatele - Billy Talagi
Vaiea - Taliatitama Taliati
Liku - Pokotoa Sipeli
Namukulu - Jack Willie Lipitoa
Tuapa - Fisi Pihigia

Common Roll Six:
Toke Talagi
Terry Coe
Togia Sioneholo
Joan Viliamu*
Crossley Tatui*
Stan Kalauni*
Losing their seats Esther Pavihi and Maihetoe Hekau.


Thursday, 5 May 2011

Niue Elections: Drumming Up Support on Niue

Niue Blog - The dash to impress voters is on. In the last few days lead-up to the islands general election several candidates have purchased TV air time. Promises include baby payments, annual cost of living  adjustments for public servants and more money allocated for health, education and alternative energy projects. Popular marketing methods include T-shirts, brochures and posters.
None of the 17 common roll nor village candidates withdrew from the contest during the statutory time allowed. Broadcasting Corporation Niue is offering candidates a 1-5min one-off advertisment free but additional broadcasts must be paid for.
Polling booths will be set up in each village around the island and open Saturday May 7th 9am to 6pm.

Niue Elections: You Decide Who You Want To Govern.

Niue Blog - With the list of nominations announced for the upcoming Niue Island general elections there is unlikely to be many changes in the island's legislative assembly.
About 650 voters will go to the polls on May 7 to choose six common roll members and elect village members where a vote is required.
Unless any nominations are withdrawn it looks like  Tamakoutoga, Avatele, Vaiea, Liku, Namukulu  and Tuapa seats are safe for the sitting candidates.
In Alofi South, Dalton Tagelagi is being challenged by long time resident plumber Charlie Tongahai - the size of his family may ultimately test the result.
Former premeir Young Vivian will have his camapigning cut out in Hakupu to ensure defeat of former MP and newspaper owner Michael Jackson and Niue Public Service member Malua Jackson. However family allegiences to the challengers are likely to split the vote.
In Lakepa, Kupa Magataogia the sitting MP who has worked hard to develop a community centre and accommodation facility, will be hard to topple although there are two factions in the village. The combatant is Togalilo Konelio.
Mutalau's Bill Vakaafi faces police prosecutor Makaseau Ioane in a shake down. Vakaafi is a former Cabinet Minister and has been active in village farming development.
Past MP Lilivika Muimataga who defeated Dion Taufitu in the Toi constitutency by one vote in the 2005 vote and quit at the last election is back on the hustings along with Hamouli Kaulima a great boxer in his day.
Makefu's ulumatua Charlie Tohovaka , long time public servant, is picked to get favoured over sitting MP Tofua Puletama and Salilo Tongia.
In Alofi North Vaainga Tukuitoga who has held the seat for many years is predicted to be returned although Rozzlyn Hipa a fitness trainer will no doubt give her a good work out.
The common roll with 17 nominees is unlikely to change too much with punters picking Toke Talagi, Terry Coe, Grace Sisilia Talagi, Esther Pavihi and Togia Sioneholo, and Maihetoe Hekau  back in the Assembly benches.
The interest will then turn to the election of a premier... but don't expect any miracles. Hopefully there will be some serious challenge  for the leadership just to add a bit of interest to the election. The leader is chosen by the Assembly as is the Speaker who will be a new face following the retirement of Atapana Siakimotu.

*Special coverage of Niue Elections by Niue Blog