Opinion

Forum gives chance for voters to hear from candidates

By Shepparton News

Less than three weeks now remain until the 2019 Federal Election.

It’s the time when policies, pledges and promises abound, and when the campaign trail is extensively covered in all forms of media.

For some voters, it can be an information overload which can cause a level of confusion for some about who they will vote for on — or before — May 18.

Of course, unless voters live in the electorate of the current prime minister or Opposition leader, they are not voting directly on who is their preferred prime minister.

They vote for who they believe can best represent them in the electorate in which they live.

In the case of our region, that electorate is Nicholls, which has been re-named from Murray ahead of this election.

It has been predicted that incumbent Damian Drum of The Nationals will be difficult to unseat.

However, there are seven other candidates vying to put forward their case as to why they should be chosen to represent the electorate of Nicholls for the next three years.

There’s Labor’s Bill Lodwick, the Greens’ Nickee Freeman (who was also a candidate for the seat of Shepparton in last year’s state election), the United Australia Party’s Stewart Hine, and three independents — Andrew Bock (who was a candidate at the 2016 Federal Election), Jeremy Parker and Nigel Hicks (also a candidate at the federal election three years ago).

The other is One Nation’s Rikkie-Lee Tyrrell, who has declined an invitation to next week’s Committee for Greater Shepparton / Shepparton News co-hosted forum due to personal reasons.

At this forum, it will be a chance for local voters to hear directly from candidates about their position on key issues in our region, and to ask questions.

Through moderator Sam Birrell, the C4GS’s chief executive, these key issues will be broken down and candidates asked to offer their thoughts in an independent, non-partisan forum.

While pre-polling for the election has already opened, if you have not yet made up your mind about who to vote for, Wednesday night’s forum could help to further inform your choice.

Wednesday night’s event is at 6.15pm for a 6.30pm start, at Shepparton’s Eastbank Centre.

We look forward to seeing you there.