Former prime minister Kevin Rudd has asked the Federal Government to nominate him for the United Nations Secretary-General election, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has confirmed.
The Australian has reported that the future of Mr Rudd will be a first order of business in an early cabinet meeting for the newly re-elected Turnbull government.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will unveil a new-look ministry later today, with superannuation changes set to dominate today’s Coalition partyroom meeting in Canberra.
And in a cabinet meeting which will probably take place next week, the government will have to decide whether to formally nominate the former Labor prime minister as a candidate to succeed Ban Ki-moon as Secretary-General of the UN.
The decision could be yet another point of friction for the Turnbull government as many conservative members of cabinet are believed to be hesitant about supporting Mr Rudd for the UN job, as do several Liberals outside cabinet.
“The first significant stage in the selection process comes on Thursday, when the UN Security Council will take a straw poll to see which candidates have strong support,” The Australian reports
There are already a dozen candidates in the field and a couple more — beyond Mr Rudd — could yet nominate. Former New Zealand prime minister Helen Clark is one of the candidates.
While Mr Rudd is reportedly a credible candidate for the top UN job, he is not a bookmakers’ favourite to win, the paper notes.
“His candidacy would be a long shot — but this is the most open contest in many years and its outcome is extremely unpredictable.”
– with News Corp Australia.