Admin’s Jagajaga bungle
Victorian Liberal Party Administrative Committee members have tried to cover up their culpability in endorsing a candidate for Jagajaga who turned out to be in a financial relationship with the Somali government.
The Somali government has signed up to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, and there are real possibilities that China could use agents, including Somali go-betweens, to influence Australian politics. In official warnings from the Australian government, strong concerns are expressed by security agencies around the Chinese government’s interest in interfering with Australia’s political processes, including dire warnings about the possibility of compromised people who already hold influential positions within political parties.
Members of the Robert Clark’s Administrative Committee including Ian Quick spoke to The Age in an attempt to distance themselves from their disastrous decision to endorse political pawn Zahra Mustaf for the Seat of Jagajaga in the upcoming Federal election.
Disbelief and anger reverberated around the Liberal Party after the news broke that Robert Clark was attempting to secretly and silently drop their handpicked candidate after serious legal and security questions were raised, including the possibility that the former candidate would be in violation of Section 44 of the Constitution should she be elected.
Ian Quick and several fellow factional Admin Committee members took to speaking to The Age to spin their way out of trouble. With the party’s State Council said to be held in coming months, current Admin members backing Robert Clark have tried to escape the fallout from party members over the cover up.
Left-leaning The Age newspaper is seen as a soft target by the current ruling faction in the Liberal Party, and was used by Ian Quick to publish his talking points and propaganda around difficulties vetting candidates.
Robert Clark’s nepotistically appointed vetting panel failed to uncover any problems with the former Jagajaga candidate as they were too eager to have Frank Greenstein run the African-born Ms Mustaf as their factional plaything. After they had rammed through her nomination, information from security agencies was uncovered which forced the factional Administrative Committee to reverse their decision and drop their candidate.
Robert Clark did not go on the record and it was left to State Director Sam McQuestin to advise party members without explanation that nominations for Jagajaga had reopened.
Party members are demanding that Ian Quick’s factional leaders come clean about the whole scandal. They also question the appropriateness of Mr Quick’s infatuation with speaking to The Age.
“There are a whole range of interplaying factors here,” a respected senior party member explained. “We have the problem of Quick’s obsession with preselecting this candidate. We have incompetence rife on every committee throughout the party at the moment because of factionalism. The biggest problem of all, in the spirit of the great Howard-era Treasurer of Australia, ‘We have the greatest threat of Chinese interference’.”
One indication of Ms Mustaf’s inappropriateness as a political candidate was that she was forced to clean up her online presence and social media profile, as well the creation (by others) of online fake architectural design “branding” material and profiles.
Ms Mustaf was chosen by Ian Quick’s faction because of her left-leaning credentials including multicultural tokenism and her past involvement with the UN.
“Robert Clark should not escape the ire of the party branch members,” a well placed Liberal wrote.