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Assembly passes motion condemning Seselja for 'betrayal'

ACT Liberal Zed Seselja.

ACT Liberal Zed Seselja. Photo: Jay Cronan

ACT Labor and Greens MLAs have used their numbers in the Legislative Assembly to pass a motion condemning former opposition leader Zed Seselja for ‘‘betraying’’ the voters of Lanyon Valley.

The move came after a motion from Mr Seselja calling for more recreation facilities for Lanyon  backfired in the Assembly chamber on Wednesday.

Education and Training Minister Joy Burch moved an amendment stating that Mr Seselja’s move into federal politics represented ‘‘a betrayal of the trust placed in him by the voters of Lanyon Valley’’.

The opposition attacked Ms Burch, a member for Brindabella, for a ‘‘grubby’’ and ‘‘politically motivated’’ amendment.

Mr Seselja is under growing pressure from the government to quit the Legislative Assembly after winning the Canberra Liberals’ nomination for the Senate.

The former opposition leader was heckled by government MLAs in the chamber on Wednesday as he accused ACT Labor of having ‘‘walked away’’ from the people of Tuggeranong.

Chief Minister Katy Gallagher asked the Senate candidate who was ‘‘walking away now’’ from Canberra’s southern suburbs.

And Ms Burch said Mr Seselja’s motion, which stated  the government had failed, for 10years, to provide for the Lanyon community, showed ‘‘hypocrisy’’.

‘‘I am a little bit surprised that Mr Seselja should bring this motion in today given, one, that he’s seeking to get away from the people of Lanyon as quickly as he can, given that he’s only really just discovered them,’’ she said.

‘‘I am surprised that he would draw attention to his hypocrisy and draw  attention to the trail of broken promises to the people of Brindabella that paved his election result and draw attention to his betrayal of his former friend and mentor Gary Humphries.’’

Ms Burch attacked Mr Seselja for switching from Molonglo to the Brindabella electorate for last year’s  election and claiming in his campaign material that ‘‘everything I do will be about local solutions, local services, local answers and local commitment’’.

‘‘We know that there should have been a small print in there to say that this contract will be torn up as soon as it suits me,’’ Ms Burch said.

‘‘Mr Seselja neglected to mention that he would stick around for as long as it took him to find something better.’’

But Mr Seselja said Tuggeranong voters had turned their back on ACT Labor after years of neglect and would do so again.

‘‘This is the problem with the Labor Party,’’ he said. ‘‘They somehow think that that result was all about Zed, or all about one individual factor – it was not.

‘‘It was a rejection of what the Labor Party and the Greens have stood for for years.

‘‘It’s the culmination of the people of Tuggeranong saying enough’s enough.

‘‘If you think that somehow you’re going to be able to get them back just because I might not be on the ticket at the next election, you’ve got another thing coming.’’

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17 comments

  • Did Queensland parliament sanctioned Anna Bligh abandoned her electorate after 2012 Queensland state election. This is lowest common denominator politics..Rainbow coalition only play politics .

    Commenter
    robotichorse
    Date and time
    February 28, 2013, 8:22AM
    • What a complete and total waste of taxpayers money!
      This is a simple message to the legislative Assembly. Stop fooling around playing politics and focus on your job - administering Canberra.

      Commenter
      Woppadingo
      Date and time
      February 28, 2013, 9:32AM
      • Really, why should we in the ACT be surprised at this?

        They are all just playing at being toy pollies in a "toy town" legislative assembly, and of course looking after themselves in the process.

        Plus don't forget that they are so busy in the legislative assembly that they need more pollies.

        Commenter
        Tc
        Date and time
        February 28, 2013, 12:42PM
    • I'm sooo glad Joy Burch is focusing on the important issues such as the welfare of children etc as per her apparent portfolio. The Liberals are right, this is nothing but grubby politics, Labor knows full well that Zed's move to the Senate is dangerous for them so they're throwing every ridiculous thing at it, including a "betrayal" motion, LOL that's a good one. Save your energy Katy, and get on with the job YOU were elected to do. Whether Zed represents the people of Canberra through the LA or a Senate seat for Canberra, is actually irrelevant and you know it.Who's "using" the people of Brindabella now? We're not that stupid.

      Commenter
      get on with it
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      February 28, 2013, 9:33AM
      • I like the word "hubris". I tend to use it a lot at times like this ...

        In its modern use, hubris denotes overconfident pride and arrogance; it is often associated with a lack of humility, though not always with the lack of knowledge.

        Commenter
        Outraged of Palmerston
        Date and time
        February 28, 2013, 9:49AM
        • Outraged of Palmertson has hit the nail on the head. Hubris is a perfect descriptor for Zed's attitude. It was hubris that allowed him to switch electorates before the last local election; it was hubris that convinced him to walk away from his responsibilities to the people of Brindabella; it was hubris that allowed him to betray his own sitting senator and the majority of members of his own local party; and it was hubris that allowed him to put his burning ambition for personal advancement above everything and everyone.

          The motion at the legislative assembly might have been petty and political, but he deserved it.

          Commenter
          yumq
          Location
          Reid
          Date and time
          February 28, 2013, 11:35AM
      • THANK YOU JOY, you took the words right out of my mouth.

        Commenter
        Another Grumpyoldfart
        Location
        Tuggeranong
        Date and time
        February 28, 2013, 10:07AM
        • Hear, hear!

          Zed has betrayed Gary Humphries, his former friend and mentor, far more than he has betrayed the voters of Brindabella, who will at least get their next preference to fill the vacancy.

          Poor old Gary just gets kicked to the gutter to rot. Decent people can only hope that he is given a second chance and a FAIR preselection ballot. Would the last moderate and decent "Lib" pollie to leave please turn out the lights? (I'm looking at you, Russell Broadbent; they'll be after you next.)

          Commenter
          Robert
          Location
          Canberra
          Date and time
          February 28, 2013, 1:08PM
      • What a bunch of shrill petulant school children! Much as I think Zed's move is the height of opportunism, this is not a matter worthy of a censure motion on the floor of the chamber. It only confirms my opinion of this Territory unicameral parliament; that it ranks with the lowest of amateurish local councils!

        Commenter
        Liberte
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        February 28, 2013, 10:38AM
        • Do I sense a hint of JEALOUSY within the ACT Laobr ranks (esp. Joy?) knowing that none of them would be able to make to jump to Federal Politics and serve all ACT (not just Lanyon Valley) and the country?

          Commenter
          Julia Rudd
          Date and time
          February 28, 2013, 11:12AM

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