Former Premier Colin Barnett announces retirement from politics

Colin Barnett. Photo: Jon Bassett
Colin Barnett. Photo: Jon Bassett

FORMER WA Premier Colin Barnett has announced his retirement from politics.

Mr Barnett (67) made the announcement on ABC Radio this morning.

“I have decided to retire from politics,” the Cottesloe MLA told presenter Geoff Hutchison.

“People have been expecting that.

“My intention is my last public events will be Australia Day and the Cottesloe to Rottnest swim.

“I’ve had it my mind for a few months.”

Mr Barnett’s Liberal party suffered a crushing defeat in the March state election, and he said he didn’t want to jump ship in the wake of that loss.

But he added he had been weighing up retirement for a few months.

“I’m not the sort of person to quit and run,” he said.

“I felt a responsibility to stay.

“I’ve been in politics 27 years, I’ve seen out this year.

“That’s long enough.

“I feel a little bit like the elephant in the room.

“Most political careers end in tears.

“In politics and in sport, it finishes absolutely abruptly.

“But I’ve been luckier than most.”

Reacting to speculation of a resignation this morning, Cottesloe voters were divided about Barnett’s contribution to the State and their electorate.

“He should have gone a long time ago, because I feel he never acted for Cottesloe people,” resident Inge Benda said.

However, others were more praising of Mr Barnett’s contribution to the State.

“I love the new Perth Stadium and I think the infrastructure he put in place can only benefit the State in the long run,” Mt Claremont resident Lexie Trevenen said.

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