One Cook Islands president George Turia announced the move yesterday, stating the decision had the full support of his MPs and Executive and they now looked forward to focusing on the 2018 General Election.
“Recent decisions taken by the Democratic Party were not in our best interests nor in accordance with the spirit and principles of that Policy Partnership Agreement,” Turia said in a statement.
“Therefore it is timely to formally withdraw and concentrate on our own strengths rather than continue in an “environment of political uncertainty.
“We deliberately left this decision until after the Ivirua by-election to ensure the Democratic candidate was given a fair chance of securing that seat.
“That’s now over and there really is no reason to continue with the partnership due to ‘the varied competing interests.
“Although we have withdrawn from the agreement, we are still supportive of the principle of partnership and have left the door open for future political dialogue.”
In the case of Aitutaki, Tupapa and Mauke, One Cook Islands remained committed to its Democratic colleagues in those constituencies and would honour its support and agreement for as long as the Demos maintained the same level of commitment, Turia said.
“We are equally excited because of the increasing interest towards our Movement and who knows what the future may bring.
“As we all know, politics is a numbers game based on strategy rather than just personalities.
“The beauty about our position is that we no longer have any political liabilities nor have to contend with personality issues as was the case previously therefore we will continue to go from strength to strength as we focus on building capacity as well as confidence in our candidates and supporters.
“I am optimistic the future looks positive for One Cook Islands as an alternative option to the two main political parties going into next year’s General Election as our policies will be based on a platform of simplicity and achievable outcomes in the interests of our people.”
Asked what the implications of the move were for the Demo Party leader Tina Browne said she had only become aware of Turia’s statement 10 minutes before CINews emailed her.
“We are happy with the announcement. It is consistent with our stance.”