Landmark & Views

Parliament House

Vanuatu / The Pacific

Parliament House in Port Vila was established at the time of the 1980 constitution when Vanuatu declared independence from France and the UK.  Vanuatu’s form of government is similar to the rest of the Commonwealth, derived from the Westminster system, and is a unicameral legislative body.  It has a Government and an opposition.  It differs a little, however, due to its French influence.  For this reason, Vanuatu’s Head of State is known as the President, rather than Governor.  His powers are limited and he cannot over-rule Parliament unless the Supreme Court rules that it has broken the constitution.  

Unlike other Pacific states, the colonial Government never installed a local government, whether French or British, so what has come out is designed especially for the needs of Vanuatu. This building, therefore, is where Vanuatu’s President and government members sit.

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