Australian election: Opposition party concedes defeat

Australian election: Opposition party concedes defeat

Sunday, July 10, 2016 5:07 am


 Australian Prime Minister Turnbull: coast now clear to form coalition government

Australian Prime Minister Turnbull: coast now clear to form coalition government

Australia’s Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will form a new government.

After uncertainties over the strength of the parties in parliament following the federal elections, the opposition Labor Party today finally conceded defeat , clearing the way for Turnbull to form a new cabinet.

Counting of votes in the marathon election continues, but Bill Shorten, the leader of the Labour Party, said the ruling coalition government headed by Turnbull would secure enough seats to retain power.

Shorten said he accepts that Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has a mandate to pursue the policies he took to the election.

According to Sydney Morning Herald, Mr Shorten said he spoke to Mr Turnbull today to congratulate him on his victory.

“I respect that Mr Turnbull has won government – be it a minority government or a majority of one or two,” Mr Shorten said.

“I believe that the government has won the election absolutely.”

Bill Shorten: Australia Labour Party leader

Bill Shorten: Australia Labour Party leader

Mr Shorten had previously acknowledged the Coalition was likely to “scrape” over the line but had not officially conceded defeat.

He said he respected Mr Turnbull has a mandate to pursue his policies but that Labor also has its own mandate from voters to defend its values.

He said the government should consider re-examining its superannuation changes to ensure they are not retrospective.

Mr Shorten said he had also written to Mr Turnbull to call for a bipartisan investigation into electronic voting because of how long it has taken the Australian Electoral Commission to determine the result.

More than a week after the Federal Election fewer than 500 votes separates the major party contestants in five line-ball seats.

But the Coalition now has a narrow lead in two of those doubtful seats and looks increasingly likely win at least 76 seats giving the Turnbull Government an outright majority in the House of Representatives.

*Reported by Reuters and Sydney Morning Herald

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