Title: New Caledonia looking at the experiences of other Pacific Island countries : borrowing from Pacific pasts? Author: Chauchat, Mathias
Volume: Vol.32, 2012
Collation: p. 65-72
Abstract: Decolonisation has always been tragic in French history. How can such a situation be avoided in New Caledonia? New Caledonia has been on the United Nations list of non-self-governing territories since 1986. Civil unrest, which culminated in 1988, led to agreement with France on increased autonomy under the Matignon Accord of 1988 and the Noumea Accord of 1998. The Noumea Agreement borrowed from the Melanesian tradition called palabre, in which Kanak communities, traditionally. sit and talk together in order to solve problems. The Noumea Agreement also borrowed separate citizenship from the Anglo-Saxon tradition. The Noumea Agreement describes the process of transfer of powers from France to New Caledonia as irreversible. It provides for mandating a referendum sometime after 2014 on the contentious issue of independence. This referendum could be a recipe for disaster. What could New Caledonia borrow from Pacific Pasts?