Two ministers removed by acting PM

INFRASTRUCTURE and Public Utilities Minister Jotham Napat and Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Matai Seremiah have been removed from their ministries by acting Prime Minister, Bob Loughman today, in the biggest drama to beset the Salwai Government.

Their removal follows the launch of a motion of no confidence in the Salwai government and political experts in Port Vila told The Independent Online news that it has a real chance of success.

Unconfirmed figures suggest the motion is supported by 27 MPs.

Political insiders told the Independent tonight that the group involved is aiming and hoping for a total of 31 MPs to support the motion, which would ensure the end of the Salwai Government.

As reported in the Wilson’s Word column on this website last Saturday, there has been growing concern and jealousy in government ranks over the increasing power of Jotham Napat’s Leaders Party.

This follows their recent victory in the Tanna by-election for the seat vacated by former PM Joe Natuman.

Mr Seremiah told The Independent Online news tonight that he would walk away from his ministry ‘with my head held high’.

“I have worked very hard and I am extremely proud of everything I have achieved in this ministry in the past two years,” he said.

“But really we have been waiting for this day since the beginning of 2017.”

Prime Minister Charlot Salwai was elected to power in February, 2016 and is due to fight new national elections in 2020.