The Queensland Greens say they will stay and fight to give progressive voters a voice in Brisbane’s inner west after the Queensland Environment Minister abandoned the electorate to be parachuted into a safe seat.

Former Queensland Senator and Queensland Greens convenor Andrew Bartlett said: “People in the inner west of Brisbane deserve a progressive voice in Parliament. Steven Miles and Queensland Labor’s decision to abandon the people of Mount Coot-tha proves once again they will always act first for their own interests.

“We know a vote for the LNP is a vote for the yet-to-be official LNP and One Nation alliance. People in the inner west of Brisbane who are uneasy with the LNP’s growing embrace of One Nation’s hateful rhetoric now have a clear choice when it comes to a progressive and principled representative.

“The Greens candidate for Mount- Coot-tha Michael Berkman will not cut and run like Steven Miles. He is committed to run for pre-selection for the newly created seat of Maiwar as a matter of principle and integrity.

“Steven Miles abandoning his electorate can only help the Greens win this seat from the LNP. The Greens outpolled Labor across the booths within the boundaries of Maiwar in both the Federal and Council elections last year, and will do so again in the State Election.

“We plan to win over enough LNP voters disaffected with the One Nation alliance so that the inner-west can finally have a progressive representative dedicated to put local people before corporate donors.

“The new seat of Maiwar gives inner-west residents a historic chance to elect the first Greens member of Queensland Parliament, someone that is there not to climb the political ladder and wheel and deal in party politics. Someone who won’t abandon his constituents at the first signs his job might be at risk.”