Gail Sellers, mayoral candidate 2016
Gail Sellers, mayoral candidate 2016

'Political stunt': Mayor fires back at Deputy Mayor

GAIL Sellers released the following statement after fellow mayoral candidate Matt Burnett's announcement he would be heading to Brisbane tomorrow to discuss the return of water board dividends.

I can't help but see this as a political stunt.

>> READ: Matt Burnett suspends campaign to argue for a fair share of Gladstone Water Board Dividens

As late as yesterday, Cr Burnett was resigned to the fact that he had failed to deliver on his promise to return the GAWB dividends to the Gladstone community. He read a letter to Council in open session which showed that despite alleged earlier verbal commitments from the Premier, the State Government had refused to make a commitment to reinstate the dividends. Cr Burnett called on the next Council to keep up the fight. He was resigned to failure.

Now just 24 hours later he has somehow resurrected his campaign from the ashes and now has a meeting with the Premier just days before polling day and at a time when the Premier is struggling to hold her Government together.

This whole episode doesn't smell right. Cr Burnett has announced that he is suspending his campaign, whatever that means. I take it that Cr Burnett won't be running any election advertisements while he is in Brisbane and he will be taking down his campaign signs.

The Local Government Act prohibits Council from spending money on any activity that could be seen to be electioneering. Council is not allowed to fund anything that could influence the result of an election.

The only way that I can interpret these actions are as a desperate last minute political stunt using the resources of the Labor party to interfere in the outcome of the election. I think that Cr Burnett has underestimated the intelligence of the Gladstone Regional community and this will be seen for just what it is.



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