HARMONIOUS DEBATE?: A war of words has erupted between councillors David Lewis (pictured) and James Hansen over Harmony Day.
HARMONIOUS DEBATE?: A war of words has erupted between councillors David Lewis (pictured) and James Hansen over Harmony Day. Alistair Brightman

Councillors' un-harmonious debate on Harmony Day

A WAR of words over local government's role in Harmony Day has created a lack of harmony between two of the region's councillors.

The discussion quickly turned ugly when other commenters jumped in on the conversation.

It relates to a recent decision from the Mackay Regional Council to make Mackay a refugee-welcome zone on Harmony Day last week.

Fraser Coast Regional Council - Cr. James Hansen.
Fraser Coast Regional Council - Cr. James Hansen. Alistair Brightman

But councillor James Hansen, the former One Nation candidate for Maryborough, dismissed the idea on his Facebook page.

Comments exchanged by councillors James Hansen and David Lewis on the role of local government in Harmony Day.
Comments exchanged by councillors James Hansen and David Lewis on the role of local government in Harmony Day. Contributed

"Why do councils get involved with kind of rubbish, stick to what councils are all about, roads, and basic infrastructure and building communities,” he wrote.

It caught the attention of fellow councillor David Lewis, who said it "might be useful” for Cr Hansen to attend a Harmony Day event next year.

"It's all part of being a tolerant and welcoming society. Everyone Belongs, as the slogan of the day said. I hope you listened carefully to mayor Greg Williamson's comments. Community is part of council's core business,” Cr Lewis wrote.

Comments exchanged by councillors James Hansen and David Lewis on the role of local government in Harmony Day.
Comments exchanged by councillors James Hansen and David Lewis on the role of local government in Harmony Day. Contributed

But Cr Hansen shot back, saying he had "better things to do.”

Other commenters criticised Cr Lewis over his comment.

One resident told him to "watch the Wiggles if you want harmony” and not to "bury his head in the sand with greeny BS.”

Cr Lewis told the Chronicle the row between himself and Cr Hansen was "just a difference of opinion on an issue not before the council.”

Harmony Day was held on March 21 across Australia, with the Fraser Coast hosting a morning tea at the Neighbourhood Centre.

Cr Hansen was contacted for comment, but did not respond before print deadline.