Trio keen to `self-destruct'

A candidate in each of the seats for the coming Legislative Council elections is running on a platform of abolishing the Upper House.

Nominations for the three seats, Buckingham, South Esk and Macquarie, closed at noon yesterday, and 12 candidates were announced.

There are five in Macquarie -- Cressy farmer Russell Anderson, Longford's Laurie Favelle, Campbell Town farmer David Gatenby, Launceston doctor Jan Martin and former electorate secretary Jacquie Murphy.

There are five in South Esk -- retired King Island town clerk Frank Bryce, from Lebrina, St Helens office manager Christine Dewar, sitting MLC Colin Rattray, St Marys farmer Stephen Salter and Binalong Bay driver- operator Tim Woolnough.

In the Southern seat of Buckingham, sitting MLC David Crean is up against 21-year-old medical student Sam Martin, of Battery Point.

Mr Martin, his father Jan Martin and Frank Bryce are standing on a combined platform of getting rid of the Upper House.

Sam Martin, studying at the University of Tasmania, said the three had no party affiliations.

His opponent, Dr Crean, said that people did not traditionally support sole-issue candidates.

In Macquarie, 47-year-old Mr Anderson was a Liberal Party candidate for the Federal seat of Lyons in 1996, but said that he had resigned from the Liberal Party and was running as an independent on a platform of reducing State debt and helping small business.

Mr Favelle, 50, is a member of the Northern Midlands Council and is running as an Independent Liberal, although he has not sought endorsement.

Mrs Murphy, 35, was the electorate assistant for her husband, Senator Shayne Murphy, but has resigned to conduct her campaign as an Independent Labor candidate.

South Esk candidate Christine Dewar is 54 and runs the St Helens Visitor Information Centre.

She is also director of Gateway for the East Coast. She is running as an independent.

Mr Woolnough is 42, is unemployed and has no party affiliations.

Mr Bryce worked in high-level local government positions for 30 years in NSW, the Northern Territory and Tasmania, and has never been a member of a political party.

He said that a referendum should be held on abolishing the Upper House.

The elections will be held on Saturday, 23 May.