It seems the news is all over the shop with news about the Labor Party’s pre-selection processes, factional fights and of course their see-saw of “to promote culturally diverse candidates or not”. But in any case this particular headline is positive for more Asian/Asian Australian representation.
Cassandra Fernando a Shop Distributive and Allied Employees organiser in Melbourne was selected by Victorian Labor’s right faction to replace Anthony Byrne for the seat of Holt – which is a very safe Labor seat in Melbourne’s south-east. Byrne is quitting politics after he exposed a branch stacking racket in Victorian Labor. Fernando is Sri Lankan background and that is definitely a win for our Asian family. FYI – Holt will be an interesting seat to watch during the Federal Election campaign as both Fernando and the Greens candidate for Holt Sujit Mathew are both South Asian background.
Jana Stewart, a Mutthi Mutthi and Wamba Wamba First Nations woman and former Victorian public servant will take over Senator Kimberly Kitching’s spot after she recently passed away of a heart attack.
All in all these decisions in Victoria are pretty good in terms of who got selected, though the same can’t be said about NSW Labor with both Kristina Keneally being parachuted into the seat of Fowler over Tu Le – a Vietnamese Australian woman and Andrew Charlton for Parramatta who was parachuted over 3 potential candidates with culturally diverse backgrounds with 2 of them being South Asian women. Hence I wrote at the start – “a see- saw”...
Keep an eye out!
Some images via the Guardian Australia