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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 29 August 2015
NEWS 4 THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 29 AUGUST 2015 NXT spells trouble for major parties Nick Xenophon Team to run for all lower house seats in SA Senator Nick Xenophon is promising to set the cat amongst the pigeons in the 2016 federal election by running Nick Xenophon Team (NXT) candidates in each of South Australia's lower house seats. Despite being one the smallest states in the federation, with 11 seats out of 150 in the House of Representatives, SA will be a key battleground, with the new submarines contract and the impending Holden plant closure already key issues. The popular independent senator told reporters this week that NXT candidates would be drawn from the political centre. "The ambition is to run in all 11 lower house seats and if the election is held some time next year I expect that's what we'll have," he said. Xenophon has called on the federal government to honour its commitment to building 12 new submarines in Port Adelaide's ASC shipyard. "I've urged the government to be consistent to fulfil their election promise and to stop this nonsense of even flirt- Independent Senator for SA Nick Xenophon. ing with the idea of building subs overseas," he said. State Labor Premier Jay Weatherill, keen to offer Prime Minister Tony Abbott advice this week, told the ABC that the Liberal party would face carnage at the next election if they failed to stick to their commitment to build the submarines locally. "If they don't get this decision right, the people of South Australia will respond, I think very assertively, at the ballot box," he said. The premier added that Liberal MP Matt Williams, currently holding the seat of Hindmarsh, "would be gone at about half past six" on election day. Failure to deliver on the submarines tender, analysts believe, could see the Nick Xenophon Team reap rewards at the expense of the major parties. ANU Emeritus Professor John Warhurst told the ABC that the NXT alliance could threaten what are considered relatively safe seats. "If he and his team standing in the lower house are polling anywhere near how he himself has managed to poll in the Senate … in the mid-20 per cent range, then he's a threat to both sides of major party politics," he said. PHOTO: AAP/LUKAS COCH. The seat of Mayo, held by Liberal frontbencher Jamie Briggs by a 12.5 per cent margin, is one that could possibly fall to a strong NXT candidate. Last month Federal Education Minister Christopher Pyne dismissed polling by the CFMEU that found a Xenophon Team candidate would get 38 per cent of the primary vote in the Adelaide seat of Sturt, compared to 30.8 per cent for Mr Pyne and 17.4 per cent for Labor. Mr Pyne, who holds Sturt with a margin of more than 10 per cent, said he instantly dismissed data produced by the CFMEU. DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM Georganas elected unopposed Former Labor member for Hindmarsh to run in 2016 MICHAEL SWEET Surprise nomination Delia Brennan pulled out of the ALP's preselection ballot for the Hindmarsh electorate last week, giving former MP Steve Georganas a clear road to re-contest the Adelaide seat he held for nine years at the next federal election. In 2013 Liberal Matt Williams defeated Georganas with a 7.97 per cent twoparty-preferred swing, but holds Hindmarsh with a wafer-thin majority of just 1.89 per cent, making it the most marginal seat in South Australia. Widely tipped to return to the political arena when an opportunity arose, SA Labor Party sources described the hugely popular former MP as the party's "number one candidate" and said that he effectively had "never stopped campaigning" for re-election since losing the seat. Mr Georganas told Neos Kosmos that he was grateful to the ALP's Hindmarsh branch members "for their overwhelming support and for once again putting their confidence and trust in me to be their candidate". The veteran parliamentarian said it was a "great honour and privilege" to have been chosen to fight the next election. "I look forward to cam- paigning and doing all I can to ensure that Hindmarsh has the representation it deserves." Having experienced four terms as Hindmarsh's elected member, a return to Canberra would be a familiar experience for one of Labor's most popular operators. "I'll work hard, as I've always done, to ensure that Hindmarsh residents have a voice in the federal parliament, and to have their views and aspirations represented." High on Georganas' agenda is the furore over the Abbott government's position on the Future Submarines Project tender process, worth $20 billion to Adelaide's naval shipyards. Japan is considered the fa- vourite to win the contract in a competitive tendering process against French and German firms who are keen to build the submarines in Adelaide. Bids close in November and the government is expected to decide a preferred partner early next year. Georganas has called the process hypocritical and a "sham" that "was never based on facts or merit". "Industry experts have said unequivocally that anything less than a commitment to build both the Future Frigates and Future Submarines in Australia will put jobs at risk." South Australia's unem- ployment rate is running at almost 8 per cent, the highest of any state in Australia, and is likely to be a central factor for voters at the 2016 election. Dementia awareness campaign kicks off Alzheimer’s Australia aims for dementia-friendly nation In keeping with the theme of this year's Alzheimer's Australia's Dementia Awareness Month - ‘Creating a Dementia-Friendly Nation’ - the organisation is hosting a number of events starting on 1 September. The focus will be on how people can take small actions that make a big difference for people living with dementia. "We want Australians to realise that everyone can play a part in making their own communities more dementiafriendly. Action starts with each and every one of us, by becoming more dementiaaware," said Maree McCabe, CEO of Alzheimer's Australia Victoria. "Find out more about dementia, increase your understanding of the condition and its impacts and help us spread the word. Make dementia a priority in your community and help us make Australia a dementia-friendly nation." Ms McCabe says that a general lack of understanding and fear of the condition in the community is the main reason dementia sufferers disengage with their community. People are reportedly unaware of the symptoms and unsure how to respond to the changes in a person that they have always known. "We would like to see people use Dementia Awareness Month as an opportunity to become more informed," she stressed, adding that it is es- sential "we take the lead on creating dementia-friendly communities". Alzheimer's Australia Vic will host a number of events as part of Dementia Awareness Month including a lecture by Gill Ayling, head of Global Action Against Dementia UK on 3 September at Zinc, Federation Square, with activities culminating on World Alzheimer's Day, Monday 21 September. For more information call the National Dementia Helpline on 1800 100 500 or go to bit.ly/ vicDAM2015 to register and view the full calendar of events. To spread the word on social media, Alzheimer’s Australia has launched the hashtag #ItStartsWithYou.
22 August 2015
5 September 2015