Will the ‘Nationalists’ also Unite or Not?

Photo: dreamstime.com

This week we celebrated the life of our very first Prime Minister, Fr Walter H Lini. During his 11-year reign as PM there was only one Opposition party – what we now know as the Union of Moderate Parties (UMP).

Around 1988, former Vanua’aku Pati (VP) Secretary General (SG) Barak Tame Sope formed the Melanesian Progressive Party (MPP) following his expulsion from VP and from Parliament ‘for taking part in a protest against the government’s decision to close the Urban Land Corporation’. Remember the riots of 1988 – ‘My Land, My Life’? Yes, that event. I remember that day very well as I was on holiday job at Burns Philip (downtown) when the protest march took place. Police fired tear gas on the crowd sending some jumping off the Sea Front into the sea to take cover.

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