Local Councillor and Chair of Cultural Diversity portfolio, Gautam Gupta, has applauded the ‘anti-dummy’ reforms to combat the rise of dummy candidates in local council elections, as proposed in the Victorian Parliament. Cr Gupta said that the region was on track to have an unprecedented number of candidates and that many residents had questioned the motives of a large number.
“The proposed change to address how-to-vote material in local government elections is a welcomed reform and I absolutely support and applaud it,” Cr Gupta said. “On a daily basis I have been asked by concerned voters regarding the presence of so called dummy candidates.”
“Whilst I appreciate that many people may have a genuine desire to represent the community, which I applaud, we cannot have a situation where some people seek to turn democracy on its head and game the system.
“There is a real difference between running dozens of dummy candidates and a team of genuine candidates from the community running to highlight a specific issue, such as council rates.”
The Wyndham City Council elections are currently on track to experience a record number of candidates and the disallowance of Clause 38 of the Local Government (Electoral) Regulations 2016 would only strengthen democracy.
“I do applaud the Shadow Minister for Local Government, David Davis, for his efforts on Clause 38 of the Local Government (Electoral) Regulations 2016. I look forward to the government ensuring this change makes its way through to being practically effective with the Victorian Electoral Commission as soon as possible.”