Mayor Brad Pettitt appears to be backing away from one of the most exciting election debate formats  a  candidate has ever proposed.

Mayoral challenger Ra Stewart has suggested a series of debates between Dr Pettitt, her and any other candidates who may run for the top job.  A debate will be held in each of Fremantle’s wards, one a week for six weeks.

Locals to ‘have a go’ on their territory

The diversity in the demographics of each ward mean a 6×6 series will give residents of each ward the chance to question candidates on concerns which are specific to their locality.

This style of localised debates may help residents understand the importance of local government effect on everyday life.

Brad’s immediate response was enthusiastic, agreeing to have diverse debates. Six debates in six weeks will offer a lot  of tempo and interest to the campaign. It’s an idea which deserves to succeed.

However Dr Pettitt appears to have distanced himself from the idea,  indicating it is necessary to liaise with precincts. That is a reasonable point but precincts are not wards and his request appears to be a delaying tactic, maybe on the advice of his campaign team.

Ra Will Run Alone – unless candidates for local seats join the debate

Ra Stewart  has resolved to run the debates alone which may be a little one-sided but an obvious expansion of her idea would be for local ward candidates to be part of a debate with her. This opens up a direct one on one discussion related to local issues.

The first debate is on the evening of Thursday 7th September, 5.00pm at the PCYC, 34 Paget Street, Fremantle.

And an apology to Brad: Sorry if the headline seemed a bit OTT but I just couldn’t resist it having considered the current family event. Best wishes to you all.

Roger Garwood

editorbackchat@gmail.com

0418 921 735

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