Officially: Ribaberiki Kiribati; Republic of Kiribati.
English: Gilbert Islands.
Seat of government: Tarawa.
Status: Democratic.
Structure: Parliament (Maneaba ni Maungatabu) is elected in geographical constituencies, and nominates three or four of its members as presidential candidates, who then stand for popular election.
Head of government: Anote Tong, president (since 2003).
Major parties: Boutokaan Te Koaua (Boutokanto Koaava); Maneaban Te Mauri Party; Maurin Kiribati Party; Kiribati Tabomoa Party.
Assessment: An active democracy with a fluid political-party system and numerous successful indepedents. Teburoro Tiito (1994-2003) was first elected in 1994 with an absolute majority, and reelected in 1998 over Harry Tong (brother of Anote). The BTK first contested the 2002 parliamentary elections, winning a plurality; Tiito was reelected in early 2003, but promptly ousted by a vote of no confidence, after the opposition gained seats. A second parliamentary election was then held, won by MMP, followed by a 2003 presidential election won by Anote Tong, with his brother again the runner-up. The 2007 parliamentary election saw independents finish slightly ahead of BTK and well ahead of MMP; the subsequent presidential election was also won by Anote Tong, defeating Nabuti Mwemwenikarawa, but the exclusion of Harry Tong and Tetaua Taitai from the ballot led to an opposition boycott. Tong was reelected in 2012, after a 2011 parliamentary election in which independents again dominated.
FH: 1-1, free.
Updated: 2015 April 25.