The French Government’s decision to proceed with the third and final referendumvote for self-determination in Kanaky/New Caledonia was unjust and unfair for the Indigenous People of Kanaky.
It is culturally insensitive, disingenuous and falls completely short of the spirit of the Noumea Accord.
Despite numerous calls from state and non-state actors to postpone the referendum to 2022, the French Government used its colonial manoeuvring in the middle of a
health crisis – where almost half the population has tested positive for COVID-19 – to arrive at a premeditated outcome.
The referendum was not consultative and it does not serve the common good of the
Kanaky population, who exercised their right to not participate in the pseudo-
This non-participation of pro-independence indigenous people should have been a clear signal to France of the public mood, recognising that the poll results cannot be received as the genuine resolve of the Kanak people.
Unfortunately, it appears that there is a blind-spot in Paris, where the results of the
referendum are being celebrated as the legitimate will of the Kanaky/New Caledonia population – although over 103,480 or more than 56 percent of the registered did not participate in the vote.
We join the Indigenous People of Kanaky and other pro-independence activists and
organisations in the region such as the Melanesian Spearhead group for the United Nations to declare the outcome of the referendum null and void.
We also call on the Pacific Islands Forum Ministerial Committee as observers to New
Caledonia to ensure an independent and just observation report of the referendum
vote is made public.