Stefaniak expands Belco Party into Gungahlin, Tuggeranong

Dominic Giannini 6 May 2021 13
Bill Stefaniak

Former Liberal Minister Bill Stefaniak created the Belco Party ahead of the ACT’s 2020 election. Photo: File.

Bill Stefaniak’s Belco Party will expand into Gungahlin and Tuggeranong after running an unsuccessful election campaign in the Belconnen-based seat of Ginninderra last year.

The party was formed by the former Canberra Liberals ACT Attorney-General and opposition leader last June and ran with the slogan, “Keep the Bastards Honest”.

Mr Stefaniak said Canberrans outside the Belconnen region wanted to vote for the party but couldn’t because they did not run candidates in any other electorate.

More choices for Canberrans were needed to break up the Labor-Greens coalition, which will have shared power for well over a decade come the next election in 2024, he said.

“The Belco Party would like to see [the coalition] broken up and see a few independents elected to the Assembly,” he said.

“[Having] three major parties and no one else is bad for democracy and informed decision making.

“If nothing changes, we may never see a change of government for the next 20 years.”

The Belconnen branch will be run by president Angela Lount, who ran as a candidate for the party in October last year.

Belco Party candidate Chic Henry

Belco Party candidate Chic Henry received the second-highest first preference votes in Ginninderra outside of the three major parties, while Mr Stefaniak topped the best of the rest. Photo: Dominic Giannini.

Former jockey and racing industry stalwart Greg Burke will become the president of the Gungahlin branch while school counsellor Jason Potter, who stood for the Australian Federation Party in Brindabella last year, will head up the Tuggeranong branch.

Mr Stefaniak secured 4 per cent of the primary vote, while the party’s five candidates cumulatively secured just under 10 per cent of the electorate’s primary vote.


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Mr Stefaniak and his candidate Chic Henry received the highest number of primary votes outside the major parties in the Ginninderra electorate.

The party ran on a platform of re-introducing greyhound racing, firecrackers and the Birdman Rally, as well as bringing electric car racing and boat registrations to Canberra.

The party was criticised for being a front for the Canberra Liberals as Mr Stefaniak is a former minister and opposition leader for the party, but he rejected this notion.

Resigned Canberra Liberals candidate Vijay Dubey and Canberra Greyhound Racing Club president Alan Tutt also ran for the party in the ACT election.


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13 Responses to Stefaniak expands Belco Party into Gungahlin, Tuggeranong
Jack Hearps Jack Hearps 9:09 am 09 May 21

Another small l .. liberal division plot ... steal the motor head vote off Labor BUT promise big but NO DELIVERY ... reality sucks when folk throw away a vote and give a foot up to a party that has zero interest in more crucial issues ... the Belco party helped get rid of the sitting Labor MLA Gordon Ramsay, the Attorney General who had achieved significant outcomes against crime and corruption AND was focusing in on age care etc ... he was a high talent and someone needed in parliament ... he lost his spot by a few hundred votes as Belco party votes flowed to Libs ... what a slimmy move ... hope all those Belco party voters liked being played.

Capital Retro Capital Retro 12:33 pm 07 May 21

How about the “Henry-Haystack Party”

Marc Edwards Marc Edwards 9:38 pm 06 May 21

Maybe the Berra Party

Paul Leins Paul Leins 9:30 pm 06 May 21

Sure, just bet a former liberal will be a real check to his mates in the liberal party 🙄

Michael Ilsley Michael Ilsley 8:53 pm 06 May 21

Glad to see him engaged in the community after the tragic loss of his son.

Nick Anderson Nick Anderson 8:52 pm 06 May 21

Thank you Mr Stefaniak. Keep this up and you’ll guarantee another Labor victory in 2024. Keep up the good work.

Kim Kim 6:25 pm 06 May 21

Keep up the good work Bill, Labor loves ya!

Greg Newton Greg Newton 4:36 pm 06 May 21

northside/southside...its wrong.

Shane Westmore Shane Westmore 3:56 pm 06 May 21

Potential name changes: Belgunga Party, Gungcompton, Tugg-gah-bel

Michael McDonald Michael McDonald 3:47 pm 06 May 21

Well, that's just false advertising now, isn't it.

nobody nobody 2:36 pm 06 May 21

Well, the Belco party got 9.4% of the vote in Ginninderra on their first election, and the ACT Greens got 12.5% in Ginninderra, so they could do ok expanding to other electorates. But, how do we know the Belco party won’t join an alliance with the Liberals, similar to the ACT Greens and Labor alliance?

    JC JC 4:26 pm 06 May 21

    Also need to keep in mind that the bulk of the Belco parties votes went to two well known individuals in Bill and Chic Henry.

    I would suggest that unless they had known name candidates like these two then that result wouldn’t be transferable to other electorates or even repeated in Belconnen.

John Moulis John Moulis 1:30 pm 06 May 21

I don’t know how the Belco party would fare in Tuggeranong and Gungahlin. He would have to rename it the Tuggers party and the Gunners party

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