EARLY SUCCESS FOR OPPOSITION IN KIRIBATI ELECTIONS

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TARAWA, Kiribati (RNZI/PINA Nius Online) - Kiribati President Teburoro Tiito has suffered an early loss to Opposition leader Harry Tong in the fiercely contested Kiribati elections.

In the crucial Tarawa Urban Council seat, Tong won 51 per cent of the vote.

Other results indicate that some of President Tiito's Cabinet Ministers have lost their seats. 176 candidates were contesting 40 positions.

The new MPs will nominate candidates for the presidency, which will be decided in a vote in parliament in January.

The campaign has been marked by allegations of President Tiito's Government trying to stifle free speech and to use the police against Tong.

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org 

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