15 May 2024

'Strong Independents' set for ACT ballot paper

| Ian Bushnell
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CEO of the Council of Small Business Australia, Peter Strong

Peter Strong was CEO of the Council of Small Business Australia. He is hoping to make an impact in ACT politics. Photo: COSBOA Facebook.

ACT election Independent candidates Peter Strong and Ann Bray have applied to register as a political party and become known as Strong Independents.

Mr Strong is the registered officer and Ms Bray is the secretary.

Appearing on the ballot as a party has advantages for independent candidates under the ACT’s Hare-Clark system, including appearing under the ‘party’ name on the ballot paper. Independents for Canberra and David Pollard have already been registered.

READ ALSO Poor health forces departure of Clare Carnell from Independents for Canberra

Murrumbidgee independent candidate Fiona Carrick, who hopes to assemble a team for the ballot, is also expected to apply for registration as a party.

Both Mr Strong and Ms Bray will run in the central electorate of Kurrajong.

Written objections against the Strong Independents being registered must be emailed to Elections ACT by 28 May.

Independents for Canberra will offer the largest number of independent candidates. Its team will be known in the coming weeks after a recent round of town halls was held to present potential candidates to the community.

The party hopes to run at least two candidates in each of the five electorates.

Mr Pollard, who sought to be considered by Independents for Canberra, will likely contest the mostly Gungahlin-based seat of Yerrabi, where he has run before.

Elections ACT has also announced that the ultra-conservative Family First Party (ACT) has officially entered the register of political parties in the ACT and can now nominate candidates.

It plans to campaign on a platform of religious freedom and parents rights, as well as attacking the ACT Government’s pro-abortion policies.

READ ALSO ‘No one else’s child should almost have to die’: Mother’s fight to change diabetes management in schools

There are now 14 political parties registered to contest the 19 October election.

They are the Animal Justice Party, Australian Labor Party (ACT Branch), Belco Party (ACT), Canberra Progressives, David Pollard Independent, Democratic Labour Party (DLP), Family First Party (ACT), Independents for Canberra, Liberal Democratic Party, Liberal Party of Australia (ACT Division), Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party (ACT), Sustainable Australia Party – Stop Overdevelopment / Corruption, ACT Greens, and Community Action Party (ACT)

Any political parties that are not yet registered for the October 2024 ACT election have until 30 June 2024 to lodge an application with the ACT Electoral Commissioner.

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