Kiribati Election Campaign Continues Despite Rain

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Lots of excitement on eve of polls in Tarawa

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Dec. 29, 2015) – Ongoing rain in Kiribati has failed to dampen spirits as election campaigning ends today.

The first round of the national elections will be held tomorrow to choose a 44-member parliament.

New candidates are on the electoral list but there are notable absences including President Anote Tong who retires after a dozen years at the helm.

A former secretary of internal affairs and current chief executive of local government, Rikiaua Takeke, says on the eve of the polls there is a lot of excitement in the capital Tarawa.

Mr Takeke says there are several common themes driving the public debate on what people want from their new leaders.

"Well employment for the people climate change, corruption people are actually speaking about that. More economic development. You know more meaningful development that actually touch the lives of people in the outer islands and in the urban areas. These sorts of things."

The second round of voting is scheduled for January the 7th.

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