Prime Minister of Vanuatu

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Prime Minister of Vanuatu
Coat of arms of Vanuatu.svg
Coat of Arms of Vanuatu
Incumbent
Bob Loughman

since 20 April 2020[1]
Term lengthfor as long as the Prime Minister has the confidence of Parliament
Constituting instrumentConstitution of Vanuatu
Formation30 July 1980
First holderWalter Lini
SalaryVt 67,846 weekly (32,295 USD annually)[2]
Websitehttps://ogcio.gov.vu/

The prime minister of Vanuatu is the head of government of the Republic of Vanuatu.

The office of Prime Minister was created under the Constitution of Vanuatu upon the country's independence in 1980, with independence campaigner Walter Lini becoming the first office-holder. The position is sometimes seen as a continuation of the older office of Chief Minister, which existed before Vanuatu obtained its independence. The prime minister is required by the Constitution to be a member of Parliament, which also directly elects him or her into office. The prime minister directly appoints or dismisses members of the Council of Ministers (cabinet ministers).

So far 12 men have served as Prime Minister of Vanuatu, some on multiple occasions.

The current prime minister is Bob Loughman from Vanua'aku Pati, since 20 April 2020. He won the 2020 Vanuatuan general election after defeating Charlot Salwai.

Disputes[edit]

In November 2009, Prime Minister Edward Natapei was briefly declared by the Speaker to have lost his seat over a procedural technicality. The courts invalidated the ruling, and Natapei regained his seat, and thus the premiership.[3][4]

Serge Vohor's fourth term in office, from April to May 2011, is included in the list below, although his election to the premiership was voided as unconstitutional by the Court of Appeal on 13 May, on the grounds that he had been elected only by a majority of members of Parliament (26 out of 52)[clarification needed], not by an absolute majority. Ralph Regenvanu, who regained his position as Minister for Justice after the annulment of Vohor's premiership, stated: "Prime Minister Serge Vohor and his cabinet are illegal, null and void and were never the government of the country."[5]

Similarly, Sato Kilman's term is included although it was also voided, by a ruling from Chief Justice Vincent Lunabek on 16 June 2011, finding that Kilman's election in December 2010 had not been in conformity with the requirements for a secret parliamentary ballot set out in article 41 of the Constitution. Thus, following Edward Natapei's ousting in a valid motion of no confidence in December 2010, Vanuatu had no lawfully constituted government until Natapei was restored in June with instructions from the court to convene Parliament for the election of a prime minister.[6][7] This was done on 26 June, resulting in Sato Kilman's election to the premiership by Parliament – his first legally recognised term as Prime Minister.[8]

List of prime ministers[edit]

No. Portrait Name
(born-died)
Term of office Political Party Elected Government
Took office Left office Duration
1 No image.svg Walter Lini
(1942–1999)
30 July 1980 6 September 1991 11 years, 38 days Vanua'aku Pati 1983
1987
Lini IIIIII
No image.svg Donald Kalpokas
(1943–2019)
Acting
6 September 1991 16 December 1991 101 days Vanua'aku Pati Lini III
2 No image.svg Maxime Carlot Korman
(born 1941)
16 December 1991 21 December 1995 4 years, 5 days Union of Moderate Parties 1991 Korman I
3 Rialuth Serge Vohor (Imagicity 1307) (cropped).jpg Serge Vohor
(born 1955)
21 December 1995 23 February 1996
(Vote of no confidence)
64 days Union of Moderate Parties 1995 Vohor I
(2) No image.svg Maxime Carlot Korman
(born 1941)
23 February 1996 30 September 1996
(Vote of no confidence)
220 days Union of Moderate Parties Korman II
(3) Rialuth Serge Vohor (Imagicity 1307) (cropped).jpg Serge Vohor
(born 1955)
30 September 1996 30 March 1998 1 year, 181 days Union of Moderate Parties Vohor II
4 No image.svg Donald Kalpokas
(1943–2019)
30 March 1998 25 November 1999 1 year, 240 days Vanua'aku Pati 1998 Kalpokas
5 No image.svg Barak Sopé
(born 1955)
25 November 1999 13 April 2001
(Resigned)
1 year, 139 days Melanesian Progressive Party Sopé
6 Edward Natapei 2009.jpg Edward Natapei
(1954–2015)
13 April 2001 29 July 2004 3 years, 107 days Vanua'aku Pati 2002 Natapei III
(3) Rialuth Serge Vohor (Imagicity 1307) (cropped).jpg Serge Vohor
(born 1955)
29 July 2004 11 December 2004
(Vote of no confidence)
135 days Union of Moderate Parties 2004 Vohor III
7 Ham Lini.jpg Ham Lini
(born 1951)
11 December 2004 22 September 2008 3 years, 286 days National United Party Lini
(6) Edward Natapei 2009.jpg Edward Natapei
(1954–2015)
22 September 2008 27 November 2009
(Removed)
1 year, 66 days Vanua'aku Pati 2008 Natapei III
Rialuth Serge Vohor (Imagicity 1307) (cropped).jpg Serge Vohor
(born 1955)
Acting
27 November 2009 5 December 2009 8 days Union of Moderate Parties Natapei III
(6) Edward Natapei 2009.jpg Edward Natapei
(1954–2015)
5 December 2009
(Reinstated)
2 December 2010
(Vote of no confidence)
362 days Vanua'aku Pati Natapei III
8 Sato Kilman, February 2013 (cropped).png Sato Kilman
(born 1957)
2 December 2010 24 April 2011
(Vote of no confidence)
143 days People's Progressive Party Kilman I
(3) Rialuth Serge Vohor (Imagicity 1307) (cropped).jpg Serge Vohor
(born 1955)
24 April 2011 13 May 2011
(Removed)
19 days Union of Moderate Parties Vohor IV
(8) Sato Kilman, February 2013 (cropped).png Sato Kilman
(born 1957)
13 May 2011 16 June 2011
(Removed)
34 days People's Progressive Party Kilman II
Edward Natapei 2009.jpg Edward Natapei
(1954–2015)
Acting
16 June 2011 26 June 2011 10 days Vanua'aku Pati Interim
(8) Sato Kilman, February 2013 (cropped).png Sato Kilman
(born 1957)
26 June 2011
(Reinstated)
23 March 2013
(Resigned)
1 year, 270 days People's Progressive Party 2012 Kilman III–IV
9 Moana Carcasses Kalosil 2013 (cropped).jpg Moana Carcasses Kalosil
(born 1963)
23 March 2013 15 May 2014
(Vote of no confidence)
1 year, 53 days Green Confederation Carcasses
10 Joe Natuman 2014 (cropped).jpg Joe Natuman
(born 1952)
15 May 2014 11 June 2015
(Vote of no confidence)
1 year, 27 days Vanua'aku Pati Natuman
(8) Sato Kilman, February 2013 (cropped).png Sato Kilman
(born 1957)
11 June 2015 11 February 2016 245 days People's Progressive Party Kilman V
11 Charlot Salwai, ITU Telecom World 2016 (cropped).jpg Charlot Salwai
(born 1963)
11 February 2016 20 April 2020 4 years, 69 days Reunification Movement for Change 2016 Salwai
12 No image.svg Bob Loughman
(born 1961)
20 April 2020 Incumbent 302 days Vanua'aku Pati 2020 Loughman

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Vanuatu elects new prime minister as country reels from devastating cyclone, The Guardian, 20 April 2020.
  2. ^ "Official Salaries not something to keep mum about - News - dailypost.vu". 1 July 2017. Archived from the original on 1 July 2017.
  3. ^ "Natapei retains seat: CJ rules", Vanuatu Daily Post, 7 December 2009[dead link]
  4. ^ "PM Natapei defeats motion with 36 MPs", Vanuatu Daily Post, 11 December 2009[dead link]
  5. ^ "Vanuatu Court decision results in change of government", ABC Radio Australia, 13 May 2011
  6. ^ "Vanuatu Court rules Kilman election void, reinstates Natapei as interim PM". Radio New Zealand International. 16 June 2011. Retrieved 4 November 2011.
  7. ^ "Supreme Declared Natapei, Acting Prime Minister", Government of Vanuatu, 16 June 2011 Archived 28 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "Kilman elected Vanuatu PM - ten days after ouster by court". Radio New Zealand International. 27 June 2011. Retrieved 4 November 2011.