Lelang calls for electoral reforms

Leader of the Opposition and Member for Kandrian Gloucester, Joseph Lelang has called for electoral reforms that would allow election petitioners to be counter-sued.

He made this point while acknowledging the National Court's decision to discontinue the election petition filed against his win by losing candidate and former health secretary, Pascoe Kase.

Mr Lelang said: “I can now fully focus on my electoral and national duties without being distracted by this election petition. But the cost of this spurious petition to myself to my electorate and to my duties as the Opposition Leader are immeasurable for which there is no recompense.”

"This petition is vexatious, defamatory, and a waste of everybody's time. There is a bad culture now seen in Kandrian Gloucester since 2012. My win in 2012 was challenged unsuccessfully. In 2017, I won by an absolute majority but that win was also challenged and later withdrawn by the petitioner during the full trial. 

"Now in 2022, my win was again challenged. It is shameful that the culture of running to the courts is now imbedded in Kandrian Gloucester electoral political culture."

Mr Lelang said that further reforms to the electoral laws of this country is needed so that petitioners can be countersued. 

"The current Election laws are one-sided favouring the petitioner where each can cook up some allegations and then withdraw at will without facing any consequences.

"The Opposition will support the Government if it brings further electoral reforms that allows the petitioner to be sued for false and malicious and defamatory allegations against a winning candidate."

Lelang added that he would work in the interest of all Kandrian Gloucester regardless of electoral politics.

Loop author