AEC Statement: Ms Despi O’Connor

Updated: 6 May 2022

On Friday 22 April 2022 candidates for the federal election were formally declared at public events held across Australia, in accordance with the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 (Electoral Act).

Ms Despi O’Connor was among those candidates declared – as an Independent candidate for the Division of Flinders (VIC).

The AEC is aware of comments made in the media recently by Ms O’Connor about her eligibility under section 44 (iv) of the Australian Constitution at the time of nomination.

Under section 44(iv) of the Constitution, any person who holds any office of profit under the Crown, or any pension payable during the pleasure of the Crown out of any of the revenues of the Commonwealth, at the time of nomination, shall be incapable of being chosen or of sitting as a Senator or a Member of the House of Representatives.

The election in the seat of Flinders will proceed including all candidates as declared and Ms O’Connor’s name will appear on the ballot paper for the Division of Flinders. Ballot papers have been printed and distributed across the country for early voting to begin on Monday and many postal voters have already received their postal voting packs.

If Ms O’Connor is elected, her eligibility to serve as the Member for Flinders must be determined by the Court of Disputed Returns.