BLAMPIED farmer Serge Simic had never thought of running for state parliament before, but he admits a general disillusionment with the current state of politics forced his hand.
Mr Simic, 37, has been announced as the Greens candidate for Ripon, one of the most marginal seats in the state, held by Liberal Louise Staley by just .8 of a per cent.
“One of my big issues was my frustration and abhorrence of the way politics is going in Victoria,” Mr Simic said.
“We have two major parties who are basically bragging about attacking each other. Worryingly, I think it’s ever worse federally.”
Mr Simic, was born in the former Yugoslavia and migrated to Australia 20 years ago.
He has previously worked in both the construction and mining industries. For the past two years, he has run an organic farm at Blampied, a dream he had always had since childhood from the days of helping out his family on the farm in his homeland.
He said choosing the Greens was a “no brainer” for him. “Who would want to pledge their votes to their two main parties at the moment?” he said.
“The Greens stand for something and there’s a stability there. They are community minded and they show a great deal of compassion to their fellow humans.”
Mr Simic said Ripon as a seat was diverse and had changed over the years from a largely rural seat to one that took in many growing regions west of Ballarat.
“The west side of Ballarat is full of emerging suburbs and infrastructure is certainly required,” he said.
“I do support the new primary school and I will continue to advocate for further education option like a secondary school.
“We need to continue to look after the environment and provide the employment options.
“One way to combat that is with renewable energies, there’s a lot of work in available in renewables. In general we get a lot of sun and a lot of wind, so it’s something we need to invest more in.”