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Council opposes anti-Islamic rally to be held in Hervey Bay

MAYOR Gerard O'Connell says there is no place for a Reclaim Australia Rally on the Fraser Coast and added he considered Easter Saturday an inappropriate day to hold the rally.

But the organiser of the Hervey Bay rally, Mandy Chapman, said it was too late to debate the date of the rally.

Cr O'Connell said Fraser Coast Regional Council had not given permission to the rally organisers to use Ron Beaton Park, the group's planned meeting place, or any other council park.

"The council does not support the rally and considers Easter Saturday to be inappropriate to conduct such a rally," he said.

Cr O'Connell said the request by the group to use Ron Beaton Park had been refused because it could negatively affect other park users.

A Hervey Bay police spokesman said a notice of permission had been issued to the group which allowed it to hold an assembly, which will be on the beach from 10.30am to 11.30am on Saturday.

Cr O'Connell said he had grave fears the rally could be divisive for the Fraser Coast community and especially objected to the rally being held over the Easter period.

Ms Chapman said if the rally was being held on Good Friday or Easter Monday, she could understand the Mayor's concerns.

"I'm a Christian myself; if it were being held on Good Friday or Easter Monday I wouldn't be doing it myself," she said.

But Easter Saturday was not a holy day in its own right, she said.

She said police had approved the rally and Ron Beaton Park would be only a meeting point.

Mandy Chapman is the organiser of a Reclaim Australia rally on Easter Saturday.
Mandy Chapman is the organiser of a Reclaim Australia rally on Easter Saturday. Alistair Brightman

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