EXCLUSIVE: Moe giving up dual citizenship to run for Hinkler
MOE Turaga loves the Bundaberg region.
And after more than 21 years of living here and working in community services, the father of four says he gas grown to know the heart of the community in Bundy.
But now he is facing a decision that will change his life.
For Mr Turaga to put his hand up to run as an independent candidate for Hinkler in the next election, he must renounce his Fijian citizenship.
It's a decision he says he isn't taking lightly, but says he can no longer see the needs of locals ignored in Canberra.
"I have felt and seen through watching people, working in the social services and community services that people in the community aren't being listened to ... so I am applying," Mr Turaga.
"I can see the local community is not being represented in Canberra, and hopefully this way we can take our voice a bit further than what we have been able to do.
He said a perfect example of the community not being heard was the Cashless Debit Card.
About 6000 people will be put on the card from January 29.
"Hopefully we can roll that back and say 'actually, it isn't the people's choice in Hinkler to have this card here'.
Strengthening family networks, curbing drug use and creating equal opportunities and employment are the key issues facing the region, Mr Turaga says.
"I want others to hear the voice of the people, and it's not about my voice or a party's voice, its about what we need, and what is needed in our community.
"My biggest thing is how do we get employment for the people, how do we support our farmers better and how do we work with business owners.
"That is my stronghold especially after working in community services the last 15 years watching how the system hasn't changed and we haven't supported our people, our family and our community."
The AEC will begin accepting nominations when the election is called.
An election is expected to be called for May.