Representative James Heaux attacks appointment of Director of Education

Tahiti, April 7, 2021 – Tahoera’a representative James Heaux has filed an appeal with the Papeete Administrative Court to challenge the appointment of the new Director General of Education and Teaching (DGEE), Eric Tournier. The elected official believes that this appointment does not respect the country’s law on the protection of local employment voted in 2019.

It is not only in social movements that the theme of the protection of local employment is particularly present in the news in recent weeks. On March 26, Tahoera’a representative to the assembly, James Heaux, attacked the appointment of the new director general of education and teaching (DGEE) before the administrative tribunal of Papeete. Member of the education committee of the assembly, the elected official lodged an appeal for “Excess of power” against the decree of 21 January last appointing an inspector general of education, Eric Tournier, at the head of the DGEE. The representative considers that the decision taken in the Council of Ministers does not respect the country’s law relating to the promotion and protection of local employment voted on July 8, 2019 by the assembly.

Rare enough to be underlined, it is moreover in his capacity as representative having voted in favor of this law of the Country that James Heaux justifies his capacity to act before the administrative tribunal. According to our information, three candidates were auditioned for this post. And among them, only one Polynesian inspector. The former Minister of Education close to Tahoera’a, Moana Greig.

Residence condition

In his request, James Heaux considers that there is uncertainty about the legality of the order appointing the DGEE. For the elected official, the new regulations of 2019 indeed indicate that “French Polynesia can take measures to promote access to private sector employees for the benefit of people who can prove that they have resided sufficiently in its territory” and then clarifies that at “equality of merits, such measures are applied under the same conditions for access to public service jobs in French Polynesia and the municipalities”.

The elected Tahoera’a concludes that the appointment of the new DGEE would therefore not respect the residence condition imposed by the law on the protection of local employment. The fact remains that if the administrative court will have to rule for the very first time on such an appeal, the residence condition will not be the only criterion to be examined by the court. The question of candidate profile is also taken into account in the nomination criteria. The case should be heard within three months.

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Antoine samoyeau

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