Independent Gareth Ward haws claimed victory for the state seat of Kiama.
Even with postal votes still to be counted Mr Ward has received just under 40 per cent of the two-candidate preferred count and leads Kiama Labor candidate Katelin McInnerney by 2 -point 6 per cent.
Mr Ward said, Serving our community in Parliament has been the greatest honour of my life. When it comes to elections, the people always get it right and it is with humility and honour that I look forward to continuing to work hard and get results for the people of our community as the local Member for Kiama.”
He said, “I want to thank the people of our community for putting their faith and trust in me for the fourth time. Thank you to the hundreds of people who worked on my campaign and backed me all the way.
“To those who didn’t vote for me for whatever reason, I respect your decision and I am here to serve those who voted for me and those who didn’t,” he said.
“This election victory may have seemed impossible to some. I received no preferences from any party and I was deeply disappointed with the smear campaign by Unions NSW.”
Mr Ward added “I dare say many decent union members would be disgusted if they knew how their union fees were being spent.”