Twenty-two-year-old university student Jordon Steele-John is set to become Australia's youngest senator. He has agreed to replace Scott Ludlam of the Greens party, who resigned last week over his dual citizenship.
The WA Greens released a statement on Thursday night (20 July) confirming Steele-John might be elected to the Senate as a result of a countback.
"Jordon has been an active Greens member for many years, and is well known and respected outside the party for his work in the youth and disability sectors," the WA Greens co-convenors Sarah Nielsen-Harvey and Grahame Bowland said.
UK-born Jordon Steele-John, who has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, came to Australia as a young child. He has vowed to be a strong voice for people with disability.
He is currently studying politics by correspondence through Macquarie University and also working in disability advocacy.
"Disability is something created by society, not by a medical condition, and we can and should together break down some of those myths and barriers which stop people participating as full and equal citizens," he said.
"The future belongs to young people. We need to be represented in our parliament," he said in a statement.
According to his profile description on the Greens website, Steele-John aims to bring a difference with his genuine action on climate change, affordable housing, quality education, a properly funded NDIS and an effective transition to the new economy.
It also says that Steele-John intends to be an active voice in the upper house, fighting for issues surrounding disability and youth unemployment.
Asked about his "mentor" he said he was shocked and saddened by the resignation of Ludlam and described him as "an incredible mentor and friend".
"We are only at the beginning of this process and there are still a lot of steps to go, but I am ready to do this job," he said.
"It will be a privilege to join Senator Rachel Siewert in the Senate and to add my name to those Greens who have represented WA in Federal Parliament," he added.
The Australian constitution does not allow a person to run for federal office if he or she holds dual or plural citizenship. Ludlam resigned on Friday after it emerged that he was a citizen of New Zealand as well.
On Tuesday, Green member Senator Larissa Waters, who was born in Canada, also quit for having dual citizenship.
The Greens have lost two senators in a week on the issue. Steele-John had renounced his UK citizenship in 2013 when he first stood for office.
He had laughingly explained he was eligible to sit in parliament.
"Yes, absolutely sure. I went through the process of renouncing my British citizenship during the 2013 Federal Election, I'm absolutely sure of that fact," he said.