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Yearbook 2016

Vanuatu. Due to political turmoil in the fall of 2015, when 14 parliamentarians were sentenced to prison for bribery, President Baldwin Lonsdale disbanded Parliament and announced new elections until January 2016.

2016 Vanuatu

According to countryaah, the result of the election was a divided parliament with 17 parties and eight independent candidates. In total, Parliament has 52 members. Three parties were given six seats each: the Moderate Parties Union (UMP), Our Country Party (VP) and the Land and Justice Party (LJP). In February, Parliament elected Charlot Salwai as new prime minister. He is the leader of the Reunification of Movements for Change (RMC), a small party that received three seats in parliament and who together with, among others, the VP, the LJP and the National United Party (NUP) formed the alliance Unit for Change before the election. After taking office, Salwai appointed a new coalition government.

In June, Salwai presented a bill with a total of 25 changes in the country's constitution. These included, inter alia, rules for Parliament and the establishment of special mandates reserved for women. In the January elections, only eight of just over 260 candidates were women, and none of them were elected. Parliament agreed that the amendments required negotiations across party borders and that they must finally be approved in a referendum before they can enter into force.

In August, eleven of the 14 imprisoned MPs were also sentenced for trying to prevent justice from happening.

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