Bondi View

Candidate profile: Noel D’Souza & James Cruz

James Cruz. Photo: Supplied

Candidate profile: Noel D’Souza

By KYLE HUWALDT

Running as an independent in the race for Maroubra is former Mayor of Randwick Noel D’Souza.

Mr. D’Souza has lived in Matraville for 35 years, where he attended public school and eventually worked as a local chemist. He considers himself a family man and someone whose previous occupation led him to “look after the community”.

In 2012 he was elected to the Randwick City Council, where he served as councillor for six years. In 2015 and 2016 he won back-to-back elections for mayor of Randwick under the Labor party. But in 2017 he was forced to resign from the party for not backing their caucused-endorsed council candidates while he was mayor.

While certainly considered an underdog in the election, Mr. D’Souza hopes that his candidacy will take advantage of the attention given to independent candidates over major parties in recent elections across Australia.

“It’s a David and Goliath task, but in saying that everything is achievable,” Mr. D’Souza said in an interview with the Daily Telegraph.

When asked what he thinks the main issues are in Maroubra, Mr. D’Souza stressed the importance of developing Maroubra’s infrastructure and transport.

D’Souza is in favour of extending bus routes and repaving and expanding road networks. He also stressed the importance of advocating for indigenous peoples’ rights, subsidized housing for low-income workers, and easy-access shelters for domestic violence victims.

Ultimately, D’Souza believes that the major parties are neglecting their jobs and the people that elect them to positions of power. As an independent candidate, Mr. D’Souza believes he is not tied to political obligations to his party and can more freely focus on community needs.

“The current opposition candidate […] has lost his way. He is focusing on his political career rather than serving the people he represents,” D’Souza told City Hub.

When asked what the major parties are neglecting in Maroubra, he simply said, “the people”.

 

Candidate profile: James Cruz

BY REMI TRAUERNICHT

Running for the Greens is James Cruz.

Mr Cruz grew up in Maroubra, attended the local primary school in South Coogee, then graduated from Marcellin High School. Cruz has worked in a library for the last eight years, as well as studying Information Technology at TAFE.

Mr Cruz says it’s the sentimental value of Maroubra that made him decide to run for the seat.

“My mother and I moved to Maroubra when I was four, so I grew up there and have been living or working in the area for about 25 years,” Mr Cruz says in his profile on the Randwick Botany Greens webpage.

Mr Cruz isn’t new to the campaign trail. He also ran for Maroubra in 2015, receiving 4,107 votes. For him, finding a solution to the energy price issue is of key concern.

“I will stand up for the issues that matter to people in Maroubra: the need for genuinely affordable housing, fully resourced public schools, and the need for more renewable energy to bring down the price of power,” he explains.

His campaign’s foundation consists of how to counteract current environmental issues that have a detrimental effect on the finances of Australian citizens. He believes using solar panels for electricity could be both fiscally and environmentally beneficial.

Mr Cruz also believes that the housing situations needs to be addressed. Due to his upbringing in public housing in Maroubra, he has first-hand experience with its problems.

He also feels that people of colour and those who live in poverty are not represented in parliament and wishes to change that. For him, the major parties are part of the problem.