FLOWER POWER: Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis hosts a discussion with protesters involved in a demonstration outside of his Prince Street office after he received flowers off Ewingar farmer Jen Lewis.
FLOWER POWER: Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis hosts a discussion with protesters involved in a demonstration outside of his Prince Street office after he received flowers off Ewingar farmer Jen Lewis. Matthew Elkerton

Protesters call on Gulaptis' office to scrap CSG mines

"I CAME out here to have a discussion with you, because I believe you deserve at least that, but if this is going to turn into a sh*t-fight I will just go back inside," were the words from Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis as he fronted a large group of protesters outside his Prince Street office.

A group of local residents milled outside his office yesterday to protest the slow moving PEL buy-back scheme.

Mr Gulaptis welcomed the mob and offered as many explanations to their questions as possible, hoping to foster the connection between MP and constituents.

"These are the people living in my electorate, and it is my job to hear what they are saying," Mr Gulaptis said.

What they were saying was that it was time to have a complete ban on coal seam gas mining in the Northern Rivers.

Ewingar farmer Jen Lewis presented Gulaptis with a bunch of flowers before blasting him with a barrage of questions concerning local citizens.

"A number of years ago I took a tour of the Queensland gas fields and what I saw up there was unbelievable," Ms Lewis said. "I spoke to a couple of farmers up there and they were fighting with the gas companies on a daily basis.

"It has ended up ridiculous. The gas is going overseas, it is unneeded, it is just a scheme by big companies to make money."

Gasfield Free Northern Rivers regional coordinator Elly Bird said the flowers that protesters carried were a symbol of hope.

"With the coming of spring, it will be time for the Northern Rivers to bloom into a safe, secure, gasfield free future," she said.

"Our community needs some closure so we can get back to our lives.

"We're calling on the government give us some information. There's so much sunshine about at the moment it's strange we're still in the dark."



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