Tuvalu. In the August 3 election, eight of Parliament's
fifteen members lost their seats, according to
CountryAAH, among them all government
members except Prime Minister Maatia Toafa. He tried to
remain seated by getting new MPs on his side. However, Toafa
failed and a few weeks later Apisai Ielemia was elected new
Prime Minister with eight votes to seven. When he took
office, Ielemia said that the previous government had put
donkeys on the press and that it is important for people who
"live scattered on nine islands" that the media is
In September 1989, parliamentary elections were held and in
October 1990 Toaripi Lauti was appointed Governor-General.
That same year, the country was ravaged by a cyclone that
destroyed plantations and buildings - especially on the
Vaitupu Atoll, where 360 families lost their homes.
The archipelago's financial situation has deteriorated in
recent years. Returning emigrants have begun to compete for
jobs with young people completing their education. It is
estimated that only 30% of those who finish primary school
get a job.
In 1993, Kamuta Laatasi was appointed prime minister. His
government overthrew General Governor Tomu Sione in 1994,
arguing that this was a person from the old regime. In his
place Tulaga Manuella was appointed.
During the independence celebrations in October 1995, a
new flag was replaced to replace the British Union Jack, but
in 1996 the new Prime Minister Bikenibeu Paeniu again made
the use of the British flag official.
In June 1997, the cyclone Kelly destroyed the houses on
the island of Niulakita. Throughout the year, the Paeniu
government tried to get jobs for the 1,000 people working at
Nauru, after the prospect of phosphate mines in this country
now being depleted.
The March 1998 parliamentary elections cost Prime
Minister Kamuta Latasi the post. He was replaced by Paeniu.
In August, the government sold the country's domain on the
Internet, identified by the letters television, to
a Canadian company for $ 50 million. dollars and a share in
the company's future profits.
The high tide, high winds and high waves in February 2000
caused the majority of Funafuti and other islands to be
flooded. The incident again raised the theme of global
warming and rising sea levels. This development may in the
long run cause Tuvalu and other islands to disappear
completely from the surface of the sea.
In March 2000, a college on the island of Vaitupu burned.
The fire cost 18 young women and a supervising life because
their doors were locked from the outside. The habit of
locking the doors to the rooms is considered a means of
"protecting" the female students from their male peers, but
has now been criticized by Prime Minister Ionatana Ionatana.
In the future, women will not be protected by locked doors
but by a locked gate at the entrance to the college.