newsCO.com.au | Candidate ‘bullied’ by One Nation official

October 10, 2017

@newsCOflash

2017-10-10 03:23:17

A former Australian Federal Police officer who quit One Nation as a candidate in the upcoming Queensland election claims he was bullied by a party official over campaign material fees.

Troy Aggett resigned as the party’s candidate for the electorate of Ipswich, saying his decision was due to a dispute with party treasurer Greg Smith over a $3400 candidate printing package.

Mr Aggett said he experienced “bullying” from Mr Smith and was threatened with disendorsement if he did not pay the fee by a certain date.

“I said ‘I’m not paying it until I need to pay it, and I don’t need to pay it until there is an election because I don’t need the stuff until they’re going to make a call’,” he told AAP on Tuesday.

Mr Aggett said although he had accepted the cost of the campaign materials, he had received cheaper offers.

“It was the way they went about it,” he said.

He said his dispute did not relate to party leader Pauline Hanson.

“This had nothing to do with Pauline Hanson, it had nothing to do with the federal members, it had nothing to do with the other candidates, it was just one guy in the office.”

Mr Aggett will run as an independent for the seat.

In his response to the claims, Mr Smith said Mr Aggett had been given since February to pay the fee, while the other 56 candidates were required to pay upon endorsement.

“I make no apologies for asking Mr Aggett to make the payment for his election material,” he said in a statement.

“His subsequent resignation was his choice and if he’s serious about running as an independent, he better get cracking with campaign material because there’s an election coming real fast.”

Mr Aggett is the sixth One Nation candidate to quit or be axed since the party first unveiled its team of candidates last December.

Party leader Pauline Hanson said she was sorry to see him resign.

“I wish him all the best,” she said.

Senator Hanson said One Nation would preselect another candidate for Ipswich, which it won in 1998.

The minority right-wing party faced criticism in May when a leaked recording revealed Mr Ashby suggested the party profit by selling its candidates’ campaign material at inflated prices.

Mr Ashby referred the matter to Queensland Police over concerns he was illegally recorded.

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