Clive’s nephew joins council race with Dowling
CLIVE Palmer's nephew and United Australia Party member Martin Brewster will run for a spot in Townsville City Council, confirming he has joined mayoral candidate Greg Dowling's team.
The perennial political candidate ran for the now defunct Palmer United Party in federal or state elections in 2013, 2015 and 2016 before being put on the rebadged United Australia Party's Senate ticket last year.
It comes after Townsville's local government election was thrown into the spotlight, due to revelations Mr Dowling (pictured right) received the single largest donation in Queensland electoral history - a $400,000 gift via Clive Palmer-owned Mineralogy.
Mr Brewster, a civil engineer who works at Queensland Nickel as a procurement and IT manager and still holds United Australia Party membership, branded himself as an independent, just as Mr Dowling has done.
He said his uncle, whom he last spoke to at Christmas, had been "very generous with his donations", which were welcomed because advertising was expensive
Ads featuring Mr Brewster, sponsored by Mr Dowling, have begun cropping up, including on a prime time TV spot during the Australian Tennis Open.
The first confirmed member of Mr Dowling's team, Mr Brewster could not outline his policies for Division 6 as he was "still formulating those" but said he worked for the council for a few years in the early 2000s as a business manager in the parks and services department and had an interest in local government. He has also resided in Annandale, which is within Division 6, for about two decades.
Mr Brewster said he had "struck up quite a friendship" with Mr Dowling at the last federal election and decided to join the team after being asked last year.
The Townsville businessman and former rugby league star could not be reached for comment yesterday, but a spokesman for Mr Dowling, who also handles media for Mr Palmer, his companies and the UAP, said many calls had been fielded from people interested to run under his team.
"This is because people in Townsville want change now," the spokesman said.
Mr Brewster is the third candidate vying for Division 6, and will battle Team Jenny Hill's Suzy Batkovic and former Townsville First councillor turned independent Trevor Roberts.