Brown could be new PM

Tuesday June 21, 2016 Written by Published in Politics
Opposition leader Teina Bishop and Rose Toki Brown, who has been appointed the new prime minister of Cook Islands by the opposition coalition, leads MPs out of Government House yesterday. 16062024 Opposition leader Teina Bishop and Rose Toki Brown, who has been appointed the new prime minister of Cook Islands by the opposition coalition, leads MPs out of Government House yesterday. 16062024

Parties play waiting game as takeover attempt checked out


IF THE opposition coalition actions in parliament yesterday are determined to be within the law, the country’s first woman prime minister will be sworn in.

Cook Islands Party MP Rose Brown, who is also deputy speaker of parliament, could take the helm of the country with Democratic Party leader MP William Heather her deputy.

The Opposition coalition resumed Parliament yesterday in the belief that the current session was never adjourned on Friday as required by Parliamentary rules. CI News understands on the instruction of Clerk of Parliament, yesterday’s afternoon session was not recorded or broadcast. Nor was the opposition coalition permitted any contact with Speaker Niki Rattle.

The clerk’s actions have been described as “unexpected” by the opposition coalition, who say the clerk is expected to be impartial at all times.

As MP Brown was present, she took the Speaker’s chair and the business of the House included a motion of no confidence in Prime Minister Henry Puna and his cabinet.

Internal Affairs minister Albert Nicholas was also present in parliament, giving the opposition the necessary quorum of 12 MPs.

All voted in support of the motion of no confidence. It appears Brown and Albert Nicholas have defected to the opposition. Nicholas’ presence in parliament and supporting votes indicate he has returned to the Democratic Party for whom he successfully stood for in the last general elections. Nicholas left the Democrats to take up a ministership under the Cook Islands Party government.

Brown was given majority support to be sworn as prime minister. As Brown commanded the votes, the next step was to advise the Queen’s Representative of this development and to request that she be sworn in as prime minister. According to the opposition coalition, QR Tom Marsters was given formal notification that they would be calling on him at Government House in Titikaveka.

However, when the opposition coalition group arrived at Government house, the QR was not in residence. The group, including prime minister hopeful Rose Brown, parked their cars on the roadside frontage of the official residence and waited. Asked to comment, Brown refrained, saying she would prefer to wait until “it’s all over.”

When that will be is anyone’s guess as it’s highly likely the QR is now seeking legal advice on the country’s parliamentary rules and Constitution. He will want reassurance whether the events in parliament yesterday were legal before proceeding with swearing in any MP favoured to be prime minister. It is likely Crown Law will seek a legal opinion from authority on the Cook Islands constitution, Dr Alex Frame.

As expected, opposition coalition members are convinced that what they’ve done is well within the law, MP James Beer saying, “we’ve checked, rechecked and double-checked  during a multitude of meetings to ensure what we were doing was within the ambit of the law, of the standing orders and the constitution of the Cook Islands.”

GIVEN the absence of the QR when the Opposition coalition clearly expected him to be in residence to receive them and government claiming to have a Crown Law opinion that yesterday’s Parliamentary events were illegal, Beer reasons that “…in all these kinds of events, you can’t expect them to go as smoothly as you’d like them to.”

Beer questions whether the Crown Law advice actually exists, as nothing had been provided to parliament members at the time of going to print. He says the advice was requested in parliament, “because the clerk raised that.”

“But in the absence of that advice or any written advice from the solicitor general we cannot accept that what has been given is actually correct without any evidence or having seen it.”

Prime Minister Henry Puna is currently overseas heading for Palau. Finance minister Mark Brown was scheduled to leave the country last night and Health minister Nandi Glassie is in Tonga. Two local authorities on parliamentary law, former Speaker and MP Norman George and former Clerk of the House John Scott have both expressed opinions in support of the actions taken by the Opposition coalition.             


  • Comment Link Vaine Toa Tuesday, 28 June 2016 16:15 posted by Vaine Toa

    Im so disgusted in what has become of Rose TOKI Brown. To allow herself and her mind to be corrupted by arrogant, power hungry males. Te karanga nei tetai tuatua "Aaere marie e aku potiki, kia ki te koe i nga ina potea". Did you really think you are leadership material? TE akaroa. Let your heart guide you not your corrupted mind as this will only ruin you. You are a disgrace to the female race, simply you allowed idiots to surround you.

  • Comment Link Jayee Richard Monday, 27 June 2016 16:32 posted by Jayee Richard

    Noatu e koai te P.M kare rai e nga'i e taui, same old rubbish.

  • Comment Link Puna Taruia Sunday, 26 June 2016 20:28 posted by Puna Taruia

    Te akama te akarongo teia e tupu nei i to tatou baselia,teia e nuinui taonga nei,noatu koai ka tu ei PM,kare pakau e taui,tera ua ka tutaki te kaiou,no reira to tatou minita e ere nei overseas i te kimi tauturu?te akamata anga tena te aronga i oake te license kia tautai ki to tatou moana,Teina Bishop ma,e ui atu e ia a ratou moni rauka mai?kikia tena aronga,

  • Comment Link TeAriki Kura Saturday, 25 June 2016 12:22 posted by TeAriki Kura

    There are many rotten apples amongst those in the opposition, plus these actions has always been cultural differences, it's been in the Government of the Cook Islands for decades. Unless the electorates of these bad apples come to their senses, and not give them their votes they should not be elected to parliament. I am ashamed of these action by these minority, and senseless group, lead by two members who have been in parliament for years they should be voted out by their constituents, next time around. The irony of their action is they enticed an innocent lady who have been in parliament no more than five years to be part of their cowardly action to stand in as PM on their behalf, and maybe later on strip her of this status. My advise to Rose is stay with the government to whom you are elected as a part of, your turn will come and you will be received gracefully by your people by following correct and legal procedures....Kia Manuia.

  • Comment Link small kids politics Wednesday, 22 June 2016 17:05 posted by small kids politics

    small kids type of politics

  • Comment Link Grace Brown Wednesday, 22 June 2016 11:15 posted by Grace Brown

    Get over yourselves, take a look at our Islands and our people how have any of you helped us? It is about us and our land and sea not you and what you want . Get rid of your big heads and get back down to what matters the people, land,sea. Sort out what is needed on our Islands for the people not for the outsiders or you.Rape and Pilage that's all that has been happening.

  • Comment Link Mii Upu Tuesday, 21 June 2016 21:39 posted by Mii Upu

    Tangi tikai teia tu not long ago Demo was fighting for Leader even those who lost their petitions still want to be leader at the same time while Demo arquing motions C.I.P.trying to get M.P.of Raapa to join to stable Gov.offer him Minister post.and still Teina still tried to get Opp.Leader which he got now offer Rose P.M. because he want to be the next P.M.that's only way to get Rose to come to his side not for Rose for himself but she felt for it they forgot the got in on C.I.P.voters.there won't be any end to the game.all I have to say embarrassing to the world from a tiny islands. Very true monkeys are back in the zoo.Tangi tikai

  • Comment Link miriama taringa Tuesday, 21 June 2016 20:48 posted by miriama taringa

    Such your policies

  • Comment Link Tera Albert Tuesday, 21 June 2016 14:03 posted by Tera Albert

    If this is legal it's fine but will all the problems continue? MPs traveling all over the world at the whim of a hat. Maybe with a younger generation of government things will improve I hope so. Cook Islands government becoming a laughing stock. The members of Parliament must realize that they're there because their electorate put them there. They are there to work for the people , they're not there to spend 3 years in Parliament enjoying the so called perks of the job like going to ridiculous meetings around the world that have nothing to do with the Cook Islands. Hopefully a new woman prime minister will have the strength and wisdom needed to run the the Cooks.

  • Comment Link Tina Kea Tuesday, 21 June 2016 13:33 posted by Tina Kea

    Reading this I can't believe how they're running the government back home. How can you people actually think that this is legal from where I'm standing it sad how you people are working the government back there. Its a stab in the back isn't it? Vote against the PM of no confidence while he's overseas along with the Minister of Finance n Minister of Health and also aren't you all meant to
    be present in house that's is the Queens Rep,
    Speaker and the Clerk and all Party members in the
    house to surely put a vote ahead for this to be leqal.
    It seems like you're all busy trying to put each other down when ones back is turned instead of working with each other for the better of the country and our people. If you ask me the size of the government representatives needs to be cut right down and all this negativity activities you people play needs to stop instead you all should be working together for the better of the country and our people opposition or not. Stop fighting each other and do what you're all suppose to be doing. Stop playing games with peoples lives and work for the people not against each other. Grrrrrh!!! soooo...childish tikai kotou its embarrassing.... to see this still going on instead of working and performing for what you all are voted in there for!!!!...

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