Van Lieshout resigns from Liberals
FOLLOWING her decision not to run at last weekend's council election, caretaker councillor Joan van Lieshout has resigned from the Liberal Party.
"On August 28, I resigned from the Liberal Party and sent letters to thank all the MPs and party members who have supported me over the last few years," Mrs van Lieshout said.
The 'Libs' were changing and the National Party's influence changed the Liberal Party in such a way that she felt she couldn't continue to work hard for the people of the Tweed if she couldn't do so as the true Joan van Lieshout.
"I wanted the freedom to stand on my own integrity."
Mrs van Lieshout said she had been "squeezed" by the National Party and wasn't an LNP person.
"I'm still a liberal voter and had a lot of support from the party but I was stifled by the National Party.
"I felt I couldn't progress in the political scene under an alliance with the National Party."
"I would have loved to stay on as a councillor but couldn't run because making a commitment for four years would have interfered with my ambition to do other things.
She didn't want to start something she couldn't finish, Mrs van Lieshout said.
However, it would be a shame to squander the experience she had gained and the relationships she had built.
"I may not stay in politics but it would be a shame to waste what I've learned."
Where the immediate future was concerned, Mrs van Lieshout said she planned to go to Europe to visit friends and look at renewable energy models.
She also planned to go to Israel for religious reasons and to seek guidance on her future.
"Once I'm back, I'll look at what I'm going to do.
"I've got some irons in the fire and want to use my experience in the future.
"I love serving the community and will miss it.
"However, the stimulation of working hard is just around the corner," Mrs van Lieshout concluded.