For Release: July 31, 2008

Darwin

In what is believed to be a Northern Territory first, the leaders of NT’s two major political parties are to address the Christian community live at a special event in Darwin.

To be held just four days before the election, ‘Make it Count NT’ is expected to draw a large number of Christians from a range of denominations to hear from NT Chief Minister Paul Henderson and NT Opposition Leader Terry Mills.

‘2008 Make it Count NT’ will be hosted by the Northern Territory office of the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) at the Mal Nairn Auditorium, Charles Darwin University (Casuarina Campus) from 7.30 pm on Tuesday August 5, with a live webcast to Alice Springs.

Nominated Christian leaders attending the event will also have the opportunity to ask questions of both Mr Henderson and Mr Mills, after their separate addresses. Christians attending a ‘Meet Your Candidate Forum’ to be held on the same night at Alice Springs Baptist Church (corner of Crispe and Brown Streets) will also be able to view a live webcast of the event.

ACL NT Director Lois Fong said the staging of the event follows on from the successful Federal ‘Make it Count’ event held last August, which saw 80,000-100,000 Christians across Australia watch John Howard and Kevin Rudd address Christians through a live webcast.

“This is a unique chance for the Christian community to hear first-hand from the Chief Minister and the Opposition Leader about why they think they should be endorsed to lead our Territory, and to hear their responses to questions from church leaders,” she said.

“We appreciate both the Chief Minister and the Opposition Leader devoting their time to this event in the lead-up to the election. The importance of the Christian vote has come to the fore in recent Federal elections and is likely to also impact the Northern Territory election.

“The Christian community tends to have a broad spectrum of concerns ranging from moral to social justice and family issues. We have an important role in influencing all political parties to develop well-considered policy initiatives which engender an increasingly moral and caring society,” Mrs Fong said. “Many Christians are looking to make an informed vote from a faith perspective, and next Tuesday night’s event should make a vital contribution to this process.”

ALL MEDIA ARE WELCOME TO ATTEND

Media Contact: Lois Fong 0417 200 464 or Glynis Quinlan 0408 875 979