‘The LNP has put me through the ringer’: Under fire Longman candidate denies PNG citizenship claims
Under fire LNP candidate Trevor Ruthenberg has spoken out about his war medal scandal, insisting he made a genuine mistake.
On July 28, five electorates will go to by-elections, including the seat of Longman, north of Brisbane.
It’s the most closely contested with the LNP a real chance of winning it back from Labor.
But the Coalition has taken a huge hit in the lead-up with revelations candidate Trevor Ruthenberg incorrectly claimed to have an Australian Service Medal.
Mr Ruthenberg actually has an Australian Defence Medal, automatically awarded to all personnel after four years.
The claim remained on his parliamentary bio for six years with Mr Ruthenberg explaining how it wasn’t picked up.
“I don’t find myself very fascinating and I didn’t go in and check my bio and it sat there for that period of time,” he tells Steve Price.
“What I do know is that I stood up and owned my mistake. I apologised.
“I immediately called the RSL Presidents in my electorate and gave them an explanation and apologised to them.
“I hope people can see that I’m not running away from this, that I genuinely made a mistake.”
Labor has seized on the opportunity and is now questioning Mr Ruthenberg’s citizenship.
He categorically denies claims he is a citizen of Papua New Guinea.
“The LNP has put me through the ringer on this one,” he tells Steve Price
“The letter from the PNG Government clearly states I am not a PNG citizen and I’ve ever applied for PNG citizenship.”
“In fact mate, I’ve only ever been an Australian citizen.”
Click PLAY below for the full interview