Vanuatu President Baldwin Lonsdale dies: reports

Vanuatu President Baldwin Lonsdale with Australian Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells in May 2016.
Facebook/Fierravanti-Wells

Vanuatu President Baldwin Lonsdale with Australian Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells in May 2016.

Vanuatu's President Reverend Baldwin Lonsdale has died suddenly at the age 67, the Vanuatu Daily Post newspaper reported on Saturday.

Lonsdale, an Anglican priest who was appointed to the largely ceremonial role in September 2014, died in Port Villa, the Pacific Island nation's capital, early on Saturday, the newspaper said.

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported that Lonsdale had suffered a heart attack.

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said on Twitter she was saddened to hear of Lonsdale's death.

"Condolences to his family, the government and people of Vanuatu," she said.

In 2015 Lonsdale begged the world to help his country rebuild after Cyclone Pam, blaming climate change for extreme weather patterns affecting his people. 

Australian Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove said Londsdale "He served the people of Vanuatu with dignity and humility, and was much loved".

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 - Reuters

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