Suggested changes to Gippsland electorate

SOME changes to the Gippsland federal electorate have been put forward to the Australian Electoral Commission.

The AEC is currently receiving comments on the 67 submissions it gathered into Victoria’s electoral boundaries ahead of a redistribution for the next federal election.

Many of the suggestions to alter Gippsland were made to accommodate the need to change neighbouring McMillan.

With Gippsland within the projected quota of electors, but McMillan significantly over it, the Victorian Nationals suggested moving Foster and Wilson’s Promontory from McMillan.

Some submitters suggested moving parts of the Yallourn North area in McMillan into Gippsland.

Thirty-three submissions suggested changing the name of the McMillan electorate. 

Most wanted the local Aboriginal community to be part of the renaming process.

The role of explorer and pastoralist Angus McMillan in the murder of indigenous people in Gippsland from 1840 to 1850 has led to calls that the McMillan electorate should have a more appropriate name.

The Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation and Bunurong Land Council Corporation suggested the name be changed to “Bunjileene-Purrine”.

Bunjileene was a tribal chief of the Gunaikurnai people when European settlement began in Gippsland.

He was captured and imprisoned over a purported kidnapping of a white woman, eventually dying in prison.

Purrine was the head clansman of the Lowanjerri or Yowengerra tribes of the Bunurong people.

Victorian Labor suggested changing the name to Monash, in honour of Sir John Monash, the military commander during World War 1 and head of the former State Electricity Commission.

Comments on suggestions to change electoral boundaries and names must be received by Friday, December 1.

The proposed redistribution report is due to be released in April, followed by another submissions period.

Comments can be made on the AEC website, www.aec.gov.au.

Gippsland Senior
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