News State SA News SA government deal won’t be known for days

SA government deal won’t be known for days

South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill. Source: AAP.
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It could be well into next week before South Australians know who will govern them for the next four years as the state election count draws to a close but two independents are still some way from making a decision on who to support.

With more than 85 per cent of the voted counted by Friday, Labor remained on target to win 23 seats in the 47-seat House of Assembly with the Liberals on 22 and two held by independents Geoff Brock and Bob Such.

That will give the pair the power to decide which party can form a minority government.

Premier Jay Weatherill said while the result was still to be declared he expected the situation would not change, and regarded Labor as being in the best position to offer stable government.

“Obviously the case for change wasn’t persuasive,” Mr Weatherill told reporters on Friday.

“The onus is on those who seek to change the government to shift the onus and they haven’t.

The premier said if Labor was returned it would seek to govern as if “we have an eight-seat majority”.

“I will be presenting a government for the whole of South Australia,” he said.

Mr Brock and Dr Such have not indicated yet who they will support.

Both have met with Mr Weatherill and Liberal leader Steven Marshall and were scheduled to have more meetings on Friday.

But they were postponed with Mr Brock wanting to gather additional material to present to the two major parties over the weekend.

That has pushed final negotiations most likely to Monday with a decision at some stage after that.

The situation is reminiscent of the 2010 federal poll when Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor took 17 days before announcing they would support Labor prime minister Julia Gillard.

Mr Weatherill said he would not discuss the specific projects or agendas advanced by the independents and remained confident about the outcome.

“But it’s really down to two gentlemen to make their decision,” he said.

“We’re in their hands and I’m confident they’ll act in the best interests of South Australia.”