Former Minister for Regional Australia and the Arts Simon Crean has cancelled his Wollongong commitments today, with Cunningham MP Sharon Bird set to step in to cut ribbons and turn soil in place of the sacked minister.
Mr Crean was due to open Father Chris Riley’s new Youth Off The Streets school at the old Keelong juvenile justice centre site in Cordeaux Heights this morning.
He was also set to join with Wollongong Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery to officially start the Crown Street Mall refurbishment project.
In an extraordinary chain of events in Canberra yesterday, Mr Crean was sacked by Prime Minister Julia Gillard after he instigated a leadership spill - offering himself as Deputy Prime Minister to Kevin Rudd’s PM.
Once a leadership ballot was called, however, Mr Rudd declined to challenge Ms Gillard - resulting in no change to the Labor leadership and Mr Crean being unceremoniously moved to the back bench.