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  • Rikki Lambert

Another Brock shock, joining Malinauskas Labor cabinet

SA Governor Frances Adamson commissions Minister Brock on Thursday

First, he was stunned to receive over fifty per cent of the primary vote in his new seat of Stuart, now Geoff Brock has been floored by an offer - since accepted - to join Peter Malinauskas' first cabinet.

Speaking on Flow earlier this week, Geoff Brock said he didn't understand why voters had backed him in so heavily in the seat of Stuart. Especially after campaigning for just 5 to 6 weeks out of respect for the local member, defeated Liberal Deputy Premier Dan Van Holst Pellekaan.

Mr Brock had at least one further unexpected fan in Peter Malinauskas, who risked frustrating his new phalanx of approximately 46 Labor parliamentary colleagues by giving one of 15 jobs to someone outside the Party.

Geoff Brock resumes the Local Government ministry he held in the last Labor government up to 2018, adding Regional Roads and Veterans' Affairs.

Labor's endorsement of Geoff Brock into the ministry may prove a master-stroke in an election where regional independents won or threatened multiple Liberal heartland seats, where Labor primary votes were very poor. With former political one-man powerhouse Nick Xenophon on Thursday announcing he would run again for the Senate and, in turn, a likely tilt by ex-Xenophon staffer and now senator Rex Patrick for the federal seat of Grey, country independents may be the flavour of the month well past the first term of the Malinauskas Labor government.

South East based Labor MP Clare Scriven got her wish expressed on Flow on election night, to be allocated the portfolio she shadowed and is passionate about - primary and forest industries and regional development.

Labor deputy leader Dr Susan Close took the mouthful of ministries comprising industry, innovation, science, defence, space, climate, environment and water.

Upper House leader, Mount Gambier product and proud Aboriginal man Kyam Maher continued on his shadow roles of Attorney-General, Aboriginal Affairs and Industrial Relations.

The 'grandfather of the house', parliament's longest-serving MP (now that treasurer Rob Lucas MLC has retired) Tom Koutsantonis returns to his old stomping grounds of infrastructure, transport, energy and mining. In transport, Light MP Tony Piccolo will want a swift signal change from the 'middle finger' he described former minister Wingard as giving to the people of the Gawler region on delayed electrification. Dates will no longer need to be pulled out of ... dates, as Mr Wingard accused Labor, and produced for a return for northern Adelaide's rail public transport amid surging fuel prices for motorists.

Switching federal for state politics, experienced and first-term Taylor MP Nick Champion was sworn in to the trade, investment, housing, urban development and planning portfolios. With much of metropolitan Adelaide's housing growth into his outer northern suburbs electorate, Mr Champion will be closest to the ground on the housing and planning challenges arising in a tight housing market.

Former SA Unions boss Joe Szakacs takes on the police, emergency services and correctional services portfolios within which SA's police union scored a nationally rare win on vaccine mandates pre-election, but most prominent and key to Labor's election win were the Ambulance Employees' Association on ramping.


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