YOUNG VIVIAN NEW NIUE PREMIER

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ALOFI, Niue (May 1, 2002 – Niue Economic Review)---Niue has a new leader.

Young Vivian, 66, the longtime Hakupu Village representative in the Legislative Assembly mustered enough support from Niue Peoples Party MP's and independents in the Legislative Assembly today to oust former Premier Sani Lakatani.

Mr. Vivian defeated an Alliance of Independents nominee for Premier, Hunukitama Hunuki, by 14 votes to six.

Mr. Lakatani was not nominated.

And Speaker Tama Posimani was dumped today, replaced by newcomer Atapana Siakimotu, 54, a former consul general in the Auckland office. He's a former high school teacher and director of education with wide ranging interests in Niuean art and culture. His wife, Loseligi, is deputy director of education.

Mr. Siakimotu defeated Mr. Posimani by 11 votes to nine on a second ballot.

Mr. Vivian's election came as no surprise. The Niue Peoples Party caucus withdrew support for Mr. Lakatani after discontent over his failure to attain economic goals and the apparent lack of consultation with the party faithful.

Mr. Vivian is expected to announce his Cabinet later this week.

The public gallery in the Fale Fono was packed as the Legislative Assembly members were sworn in by the Clerk of the House.

The new Speaker was elected first followed by the Premier.

For additional reports from the Niue Economic Review, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Magazines/Journals/Niue Economic Review.

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