Self-proclaimed billionaire Clive Palmer has deregistered his political party in Queensland, marking his departure from state politics across the country.
Months after Mr Palmer resigned from federal parliament, his nephew Clive Mensink has applied to deregister the Palmer United Party.
While he has abandoned state politics, a spokesman for Mr Palmer confirmed yesterday he would not give up on a return to the federal stage, insisting the one-term federal MP intended to keep the party registered with the Australian Electoral Commission.
The Electoral Commission of Queensland posted a notice in yesterday’s Queensland Government Gazette regarding the deregistration application.
Voters have until October 10 to raise any concerns.
No such notice has been given to the AEC and a spokesman for Mr Palmer said the focus of the party “had always been federal and that will continue”.
It is understood PUP may have to prove it has the required 500 members needed to remain registered, however.
According to the AEC’s website, the commission conducts reviews into registered political parties once they cease to have a member who is a senator or member of the House of Representatives “to see if they are eligible to be registered as a non-parliamentary party or whether the party needs to be deregistered”.
Mr Palmer established PUP in 2013 after falling out with the Newman government and quitting the Liberal National Party.
He won the federal seat of Fairfax under his party’s banner at the September 2013 election and secured three Senate seats for PUP candidates — Glenn Lazarus, Jacqui Lambie and Dio Wang.
Mr Lazarus and Senator Lambie subsequently quit the party. PUP MPs in Queensland’s parliament, Alex Douglas and Carl Judge, also abandoned it before last year’s state election.
Mr Palmer retired at the July 2 federal poll and support for his party collapsed, with PUP failing to win any seats.
The notice to cancel PUP’s registration comes just days after the special-purpose liquidator completed questioning of Mr Palmer in the Federal Court over the collapse of his North Queensland nickel refinery.
Mr Palmer is due to take the stand again next month as liquidators step up their campaign to claw back $300 million owed to Queensland Nickel’s creditors. General-purpose liquidators FTI Consulting have briefed Queensland’s former solicitor-general Walter Sofronoff QC to question Mr Palmer
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