Canterbury-Bankstown council election, 2021

Canterbury-Bankstown council covers suburbs in the middle south-east of Sydney. The council’s south-western and western boundary follows the Georges River, while the south-eastern boundary follows the M5 motorway and the Cooks River, and the remainder of the boundaries are more erratic.

The council covers the suburbs of Bankstown, Bass Hill, Belmore, Birrong, Campsie, Canterbury, Chester Hill, Clemton Park, Condell Park, Earlwood, Georges Hall, Greenacre, Lakemba, Milperra, Padstow, Panania, Picnic Point, Punchbowl, Revesby, Roselands, Sefton, Wiley Park and Yagoona.

The council has a population of about 378,000 as of 2019, which makes Canterbury-Bankstown the most populous council in NSW, and the fourth-most populous council in Australia.

Canterbury-Bankstown is divided into five wards, with each ward electing three councillors.

Bankstown ward covers north-central parts of the council, including Bankstown, Greenacre and Chullora. Most of the ward lies within the former Bankstown council area, with a small area at the southern tip of the ward coming from the Canterbury council area.

Bass Hill ward covers the north-western corner of the council, including Chester Hill, Georges Hall, Yagoona, Birrong, Sefton, Bass Hill and parts of Condell Park.

Canterbury ward covers the eastern end of the council, including Belfield, Campsie, Canterbury, Clemton Park, Hurlstone Park and Earlwood.

Revesby ward covers the south-western corner of the council, including Milperra, Revesby, Panania, Picnic Point, Padstow and parts of Condell Park.

Roselands ward covers central parts of the council, in what used to be the western end of the former Canterbury council. This ward covers Belmore, Lakemba, Punchbowl and Roselands.

One small change was made, effecting just two wards.

There were no changes to Bass Hill, Canterbury or Revesby wards.

Parts of Punchbowl south of Canterbury Road and Punchbowl Road have been transferred from Bankstown Ward to Roselands Ward.

This aligns the ward boundary perfectly with the former council boundary, such that two wards lie entirely within the former Canterbury council area, and the other three lie entirely within the former Bankstown area.

Incumbent councillors

Bankstown Khal Asfour (Labor) Bilal El-Hayek (Labor) George Zakhia (Liberal)
Bass Hill Rachelle Harika (Labor) Charlie Ishac (Liberal) Alex Kuskoff (Labor)
Canterbury Linda Eisler (Greens) Philip Madirazza (Lib) Clare Raffan (Labor)
Revesby Linda Downey (Labor) Steve Tuntevski (Lab) Glen Waud (Liberal)
Roselands Mohammad Huda (Lab) Nadia Saleh (Labor) Mohammad Zaman (Lib)

The City of Canterbury-Bankstown was created out of a merger of Canterbury and Bankstown councils in 2016. The 2017 guide covers the previous history of these two councils and how much of the new council came from its predecessors.

Both former councils were dominated by the ALP. Canterbury remained majority Labor right up until its abolition, although Labor was reduced to just six out of twelve seats on Bankstown after the 2012 election.

Labor won a solid majority on the new council in 2017, winning nine out of fifteen seats. That included two out of three seats in four wards.

The Liberal Party won a single seat in each of the five wards, while the Greens held a seat in the Canterbury ward.

Labor’s Khal Asfour has served as mayor since the 2017 election, after having previously served as Mayor of Bankstown from 2015 until the council’s abolition in 2016.

Candidate summary
Both Labor and Liberal are running full ticket. Five out of nine Labor councillors are running for re-election. Two out of five Liberal councillors are running for re-election.

The sole Green Linda Eisler is retiring, but the Greens are running in her Canterbury ward.

Former Bankstown councillor Allan Winterbottom is running for the Our Local Community party.

There are five independent groups running, one in each ward.

The full candidate list is at the end of this guide.

Labor would need to lose two seats to fall short of a majority. They could easily lose their second seat in Revesby ward, where they polled just 38.6%. It is quite possible to see the Liberal Party winning a second seat here if they do well.

It’s hard to see Labor losing another seat, with their second seats reasonably secure in Bankstown, Bass Hill and Roselands with a primary vote of about 55%. But there was no strong independent presence in Bankstown and Roselands wards, so if one was to appear it could chip away at both major parties.

2017 results

PartyVotes%SwingSeats won
Labor 77,54647.46+4.19
Liberal 48,04229.40-7.35
Our Local Community16,44010.06+10.1
Greens 13,9648.55+3.91
Other independents7,3984.53-10.7

Vote breakdown by ward
The following two tables show the vote in each ward before and after the recent redistribution.

Labor polled about 55% in three wards, easily winning two seats in each ward. Their vote was lower in the other two, with 37% in the Canterbury ward and 38.6% in Revesby.

The Liberal vote was lowest at 23% in Canterbury and highest at 37.6% in Bankstown.

Independent party Our Local Community, headed by two former independent Bankstown councillors, ran in three wards. They polled 17% in Bass Hill and 20% in Canterbury but did not win a seat.

The Greens ran in three wards, with a vote ranging from 9% in Revesby to 19.5% in Canterbury. This was enough to win a seat in Canterbury.

The redistribution had a small impact on Bankstown and Roselands, slightly increasing the Labor vote and lowering the Liberal vote in Bankstown, and vice versa in Roselands.

Pre-redistribution vote numbers

Voter groupALP %LIB %OLC %GRN %
Bankstown Ward54.937.60.00.0
Bass Hill Ward54.828.216.80.0
Canterbury Ward36.823.320.319.5
Revesby Ward38.630.511.69.0
Roselands Ward55.

Post-redistribution vote numbers

Voter groupALP %LIB %IND %GRN %
Bass Hill54.828.216.80.0

Election results at the 2017 City of Canterbury-Bankstown election
Toggle between primary votes for Labor, the Liberal Party, Our Local Community and the Greens.

Candidates – Bankstown

  • A – Independent
    1. Pierre Gaeagea
    2. Fouad Noujaim
    3. Grace Karajian
  • B – Liberal
    1. Cr George Zakhia
    2. Thu Tran
    3. Anm Masum
  • C – Labor
    1. Cr Khal Asfour
    2. Cr Bilal El-Hayek
    3. Erika Lam

Candidates – Bass Hill

  • A – Independent
    1. Saud Abu-Samen
    2. Issam Hindi
    3. Nguyen Leemen
  • B – Liberal
    1. Cr Charlie Ishac
    2. Nicholas Gad
    3. Fahmina Hoq
  • C – Labor
    1. Cr Rachelle Harika
    2. Christopher Cahill
    3. Yusra Metwally

Candidates – Canterbury

  • A – Independent
    1. Barbara Coorey
    2. Nicholas Hatzis
    3. Jan Maher
  • B – Labor
    1. Cr Clare Raffan
    2. Ray Mason
    3. Tina Flaskas
  • C – Greens
    1. Marie Healy
    2. Lyn Bearlin
    3. Lyn Ryan
  • D – Liberal
    1. Jessie Nguyen
    2. Jeff Tan
    3. Brendan Chow
  • Ungrouped
    • Linda Harris (Independent)

Candidates – Revesby

  • A – Our Local Community
    1. Allan Winterbottom
    2. Zac Lupeski
    3. Jacqueline Winters
  • B – Labor
    1. David Walsh
    2. Cr Linda Downey
    3. Gemma Ashton
  • C – Independent
    1. Scott Parker
    2. Jan Parker
    3. Nicholas Campbell
  • D – Liberal
    1. Charbel Abouraad
    2. Andrew Mortimer
    3. Mary-Therese Sukkar

Candidates – Roselands

  • A – Independent
    1. Mahbubur Rahman
    2. Mohammed Abu Sofian
    3. Faizun Pally
  • B – Liberal
    1. Sazeda Akter
    2. Joseph Tannous
    3. Anthony McKinley
  • C – Labor
    1. K Saleh
    2. Bhadra Waiba
    3. Md Kabir
  • D – Animal Justice
    1. Dorlene Abou-Haidar
    2. Louise Ward
    3. Shan Sun

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  1. It’ll be interesting to see how the Former Deputy Canterbury Mayor Barbara Coorey polls in Canterbury Ward. The amount of signs I’ve seen in Earlwood has just amazed me.

  2. I would have thought that the Liberals would do better in Revesby ward especially around Picnic Point/Milperra given the state and federal trend in East Hills and Banks respectively and potentially out poll ALP. Although i am not sure to be honest of the local issues at play or the councillors. This area is becoming quite affluent and it is less ethnically diverse compared to the rest of the LGA. The Far East of the electorate around Earlwood, Hurlstone Park and Ashbury is more middle class although that maybe more of an Inner West Green trend going forward.

  3. History has shown that Canterbury ward has been taken for granted and abandoned by the three major party councillors with focus and funds favouring Bankstown. Would love to know what Barbara Coorey and the independents stand for but cant find any information whatsoever on any of those running for council.

  4. @CantWard I know it has been hard to find any of her social media. but from what I understand her main policy is to stop overdevelopment

  5. @WestSydPol.Cheers for that. I don’t know what it’s like in other areas in the Canterbury ward. Where I live, I haven’t seen any posters anywhere. Theres no information on what they are going to be fighting for in their wards etc. In Canterbury There is 4 main groups Liberal, Labor Green, Barbara Coorey Independents and another singular person running alone from search results who I think in the past has been in support of socialist alliance or communist leanings.

  6. @CantWard Ok I received a pamphlet from her in the mail today and it outlines her policies

    – Lead the fight to Demerge from Bankstown

    – Stop the 36% rate rise

    – Fix council services

    – Protect heritage areas

    – Promote good quality sustainable development

    – Create more open green space

    – Upgrade children play areas

    – Protect and clean up Cooks River and Wolli Creek

  7. @WestSydPol Appreciate the feedback. The attitude towards the major party’s around my area is anger with the Bankstown labor controlled council. It would be interesting to see how that affects the votes in the seat of Strathfield in state election in a couple of years time with the boundary changes.

  8. Where can I find info on the candidates – despite internet searches on individuals for Revesby ward, I cannot find any published info on the candidates re their stance, background etc.

  9. Sharyn,
    The NSW electoral commission website has copies of all candidates nomination forms.
    All leaflets/fliers distributed by candidates need to registered with the electoral commission. These will be viewable on the website from Monday 22 November.

    Bankstown Torch newspaper usually has a write up about the candidates in the week before the election date. Online version of the Bankstown Torch

    Hope this helps.

  10. Have lived in Panania for many years but I now have a new voting strategy…Never vote for Labor,Never vote for Liberal,Never vote for Greens……..Sitting member/Councillor last…….Only true Independents get my vote…Had a gutful of political corruption.

  11. @Watson Watch It’s not just Garbage services. Its neglect pure and simple. Those who live on the western side of Canterbury ward feel it, its spreading. It’s also a matter of funds not being transparent and distributed fairly in those suburbs and the general resentment of the Bankstown Labor controlled council favouring funds towards Bankstown. Councillors know about it, and are aware of it and it still goes on. The Bankstown councillors have overwhelmingly taken control and put our money where their votes are.
    Bankstown chambers has been given its own little name of “the tower” because of it. I Don’t know how the neglect will affect the make up of Local council vote in Canterbury ward, but locals are really not happy , Maybe…. definitely repercussions will be at the next state election particularly with those who have fallen into the boundary changes with strathfield and seen the area turn to garbage. Sometimes, It’s the little things that will turn into big things.

  12. Cantward,
    I have lived in the Canterbury City Council area for the last 40 years.
    Hopefully, I can resolve some of your misunderstandings.

    The Civic Tower building was commissioned in 1989 and construction was completed in 1991. None of the current Councillors were on Bankstown Council at that time. In 2019-20 financial year, the council received $1.46 million dollars in rental income from this building. What is your issue with ‘The Tower’?

    The state government has a number of grants available to councils each year. A council may apply for these grants. Councils are only allowed to receive a maximum of one grant per year in each category.
    Prior the NSW Liberal Party’s forced council merger, Canterbury Council could receive a grant for footpath upgrades and Bankstown Council could also receive a grant for footpath upgrades in the same year. The merged council is only allowed one grant instead of two.
    If your much loved Strathfield Council receives a grant of $40,000 – it is equivalent to $1 per resident.
    If Canterbury-Bankstown received that same grant – it is equivalent to 10 cents per resident.

    The NSW Liberal Party was entirely responsible for the council merger that resulted in the ‘neglect’ you refer to. None of Bankstown, Canterbury, or Canterbury-Bankstown councillors had any say in the matter.

    Stop the neglect. Put the Liberals last.

  13. Watson Watch.
    I’m a swinging voter. Didn’t say I was supporting Liberals, but the mood in Canterbury area is that the labor controlled council have most definitely failed canterbury ward and If people genuinely cared about the area rather than their own political leanings, they’d know that. People need only walk the streets around Campsie and ninth avenue to see how disgusting its become under Bankstowns control.
    The Glass ivory Tower got its name to prove that point about how the decisions are made favouring safe bankstown labor areas – The tower was built only after that really, really questionable fire burnt the Bankstown council chambers to the ground
    You need to remember it’s The ” labor” controlled council who has not once allowed the residents in the C/B LGA a vote if they want to demerge from the forced amalgamation. That is entirely the fault and the shoulders of the labor councillors who now run the circus.
    I was born and bred in Canterbury Bankstown. I have also lived and worked in in this area all my life, longer than you. People are not ignorant to the fact of the corruption that took hold within council and feel cheated.
    Labor Councillors once stood for something and now they’ve become smug, arrogant and take our votes, our area and the residents for granted people are frustrated.
    Being a councillor doesn’t mean you get into the job Just to add to your CV or leapfrog into sweetheart deals you can wrangle. The only way to get any positive change in any area is to put the incumbent sitting councillors last and that counts in every ward.
    We need councillors who will fight for the residents and businesses not for their party or their own political and personal gain.

  14. I have been searching for information about the independent’s policies (and lib and labor) but can find nothing!! The list posted higher in the chat for Barbara Coorey was helpful but lacked detail. For example what does she mean ‘fix council services’?

    I have looked at the links provided for The Torch and electoral commission but as far as I could see no policy details?

    Can anyone help me? I’m in the Revesby Ward and interested in voting for strong policy on environmental, green spaces, community development programs.

  15. @Padstow heights Person,
    Very much Like yourself I didn’t know anything about the candidates and what they represented in our ward as they’re mostly new. I eventually was forced to do my own research on each candidate. I suggest you email each candidate and ask about the specific things that are of concern to you.
    If their reply is short and generic it shows they’re not interested you’ll know instantly they don’t care about your vote.
    NOTE: Look at the people who are on their ticket and what association and affiliations they have, what affiliations they have and if that is a problem in your area. it might surprise you how colourful people from the major parties are.
    You’ll have to squirrel out what the independents stand for as sometimes they’re just proxies that support the major parties
    Revesby ward is the least populated of the wards and from I can gather from local talk quite a bit of money was thrown there – Revesby fared well.
    Check how many projects and what size of project were allocated to your suburb and area. You might be surprised when you see how revesby ward fared compared to the others. Trying to get a run down of how much money was allocated to each ward is purposefully impossible.
    Revesby was Labor dominated in your ward at the last election with one liberal who is running again. You’ve got 2 independent groups so you have plenty of choice. look around and see if your area has gotten better or worse since the last election. if it hasn’t you’ll know that the current makeup isn’t working. Check how many meetings the councillors went to. Revesby will be interesting to watch.
    Ps; “fix council services” Just Try driving through the western end of canterbury ward and you’ll see for yourself how badly its deteriorated.

  16. @CantWard

    Can’t imagine putting anyone but Labor first in this one, wouldnt dare to even think about putting anyone remotely close 1 aligned with the same party who merged councils in the first place causing the problem. From the Canterbury ward myself, will be perhaps preferencing Barbara Cooey at second but by no chance, will I be putting the Liberals anywhere but last. Popped around to other Local Councils including the Inner West which are witnessing the same problems the Canterbury-Bankstown council is, merging has brought nothing but neglect to many areas. No way in any shape or form in favour of voting for anyone who aligns with the party which caused this in the first place. Done my research on some of the Liberal candiates in Canterbury Ward, one of them actively campaigned with the NSW Liberals last election, with the neglect shown by the NSW Libs towards my area as a whole, the cheap property development says it all, they stripped rights and powers away from councils limiting their role in to almost inexistant in the say of property developments.

    As I reiterate in any election, local, state or federal.
    Put the Liberals last.

  17. The lga s of concern were contrary to health advise… thus it was a lib government decision….wonder how this will impact

  18. @ Burke’s Man.
    Labor will in a seat in Canterbury. General mood around here is Alot of people voted for the Labor councillor in the west part of Canterbury ward and are not happy at all , she is only using Canterbury to further herself as a stepping stone to get into state politics.
    The Liberals will hemorrhage votes in a protest because of the forced lockdown, they lost alot of support in belfield and croydon Park with their lack of engagement in local issues and over spilling concerns with the Strathfield council property developer councillors . Greens and labor support each other and are preferencing each other in Canterbury ward.
    Greens are popular around Hurlstone park, but have now got a reputation to only favour and support Hurlstone park area and mostly care about little else. Barbara Coorey the new independent may possibly shake things up. I believe she hasn’t got support of any of the major party’s. Labor dont like her because of she was once deputy mayor and may challenge asphalt in being mayor because she is sick of Canterbury turning to crap, i don’t know if she will have any support to get a seat in the east.
    Most of the anger in where we live is that Campsie Belfield and Canterbury suburbs are now seen as nothing more than an afterthought with all labor councillors pushing their support and resources to bolster labor and green booths but most exclusively in the old Bankstown council area.Its going to be fun to watch. Since amalgamation, Canterbury Bankstown now tops the list in crime and health ordinance issues in the state.

  19. @WesSydPol It’s hard to see that labor will lose support. Labor councillors and mayor have all the backing of the Islamic community particularly when council handed over grants for parking and ripped up already installed speed humps then completely resurfaced new roads in the Chester hill Sefton, Yagoona & Bankstown areas.

  20. I apologise but I’m not replying to anyones comments and if someone has already written something about the following: My biggest concern within the LGA is the abhorrent over development in the LGA. Specifically, does anyone know what is happening with the investigations to the alleged corruption with council and the councilors allegedly involved in the unconscionable behaviour. Where is the investigation up to? Has there been any convictions? Thanks

  21. George,
    Councils have very little say in the overdevelopment.
    In 2016, the NSW government took over the planning and approval process for these developments.
    The Sydney South Planning Panel is responsible for development approvals in Canterbury Bankstown, Georges River, and Sutherland Council areas.
    Information about the Planning Panels and members can be found here.

  22. George,
    Canterbury/ Bankstown councillors involved and would possibly have a say with the Southern district area planning and development are listed below. I hope it helps.

    Member – Deputy Mayor Nadia Saleh ( represents LABOR Party Roselands Ward)
    Member – Cr Bilal El Hayek (Represents LABOR Party Bankstown ward)
    Alternate – Cr Charlie Ishac ( Represents LIBERAL Party Bass hill ward)
    Alternate – Rachelle Harika (Represents LABOR Party Bass Hill ward)
    Alternate – Clare Raffan ( Represents LABOR Party Canterbury ward)
    Alternate – Khodar (Karl) Saleh ( represents LABOR Roselands ward)
    Alternate – Allan Winterbottom ( represents OUR LOCAL COMMUNITY Revesby ward)

  23. I’m running for the Greens in the Canterbury Ward. I’ve done a lot for Hurlstone Park, but I would not bother running for council if I just wanted to help my own suburb – I’d just keep doing what I’m doing – less stressful and easier overall. There is more to do across the Canterbury Ward and I have already worked as an activist along the corridor in terms of holding the NSW Libs to account (I secured the Upper House Inquiry into the Metro, for instance – contacted the Upper House reps, provided the draft Terms of Ref and trove of evidence). I am concerned that some candidates are promising the world such as a de-merger + reduced rates + more services!! which is what people want to hear but is highly improbable..

  24. My Final Analysis before the Results *MY OPINION:

    It seems as Barbara Coorey’s popularity has slipped a Little bit (coincidentally after Retiring Clr. Linda Eisler’s Facebook post) But she’s still in a good winning position

    Labor has gained a little bit of ground in the Last week however if Clare Raffan cannot retain her seat it’s because of a) Barbara Coorey and b) how late Labor started its campaign

    The Greens haven’t really gained or lost ground. I haven’t seen any greens posters but I’ve seen a lot of Social Media advertising. I think I would be more surprised if the Greens lost the seat then the Liberals.

    My final message is VOTE and if you know someone who is not interested in politics altogether TELL THEM TO VOTE. I think we can all agree Canterbury Ward and Canterbury-Bankstown Council as a whole is a very disadvantaged area and we need our voices heard.

  25. @WestSydPol.
    I would appreciate the post by Clr. Linda Eisler regarding Barbara Coorey.
    I did learn that Barbara Coorey was ejected and not allowed to speak from Council meetings by the Mayor when she questioned funding directed towards the ward and favouring certain suburbs. It may explain why she is now running.
    Found some information on Linda Harris in this article yesterday ;
    Five of NSW’s most interesting council candidates

  26. Why are we voting for candidates we know nothing about?
    Ie, the independent have no profile to contact them to see what they will do for our community?
    This is ridiculous. It’s like a bleedin lottery

  27. @Rana
    From what I can gather The independents are mostly running as anti-development against the major parties. If you start looking at the questionable dealings with property developers tied in with elected Canterbury/Bankstown councillors that have been allowed to take place you’ll know why. Hope it doesn’t lead to another ICAC enquiry

  28. @WestSydPol Thanks for that. The Labor controlled Canterbury/Bankstown council may be very red-faced with ties to property developers and Campsie.
    A new video just dropped I wonder if the inaugural amalgamated council and mayor may have to answer to ICAC in the future

  29. @WestSydPol
    It is not Barbara Coorey and that article most probably has to do with current sitting Councillors.

    FreindlyJordies latest You Tube How to steal a city video might give you an idea and show you.

  30. @CantWard

    Cant believe Barbara can spruik anti development and demerge when she preferences the Liberals second.
    Also that Friendlyjordies video is mainly regarding the actions of the ex Liberal councilor Phillip Madirazzata. His replace is Jessie Nyugen.

  31. The results 24 hours after the polls closed

    Labor: 33.0% -3.8%
    Barbara Coorey: 23.6% +23.6%
    Liberal: 22.8% -0.5%
    Greens: 20.4% +0.9%

  32. @Burke Man
    Friendlyjordies is known for skewing his attention to ridiculing the Liberals, but he has it spot on with Madirazza.
    Agree with you on Barbara Coorey and can’t figure that one out. The most shameful thing is, Madirazza was permitted to carry on his “business” right under the noses of seemingly consenting Labor and Greens councillors and an overwhelmingly LABOR/Greens dominated council endorsed his plans. It only reinforced the idea they a/ colluded with his antics and B/ absolutely don’t care an iota and are completely out of touch with Canterbury ward and the community needs.
    After the ICAC enquiry. I really wanted and expected a lot more from the greens, 5 years have shown they only care about favouring their elitist enclave to the east of the ward at the expense of Canterbury wards west.
    Libs Jessie Nyugen is a clean skin, it’s too early to tell if she’s made it. she doesn’t live in Canterbury ward and was parachuted in with Liberal party endorsement possibly to clean up their brand. Hard to say if she genuinely cares or will engage with the community in making things right for the people of Campsie, Belmore and surrounding suburbs or if it will be more of the same.
    Labors Raffan is a monumental disappointment. She cares nothing about residents concerns, she ignores letters and emails, tells people to refer their concerns to the council. She tries to intimidate anyone who appears a threat. She’s proven herself to NOT care about the west of Canterbury ward, her only interest is her union involvement, getting on planning committees, appeasing the greens to bolster her appeal and pander to Bankstown puppet masters happily signing off on funds taken from Canterbury to solidify her next move into state politics. Labor has ruined their reputation.
    I hope I am proved wrong on this. Barbara Coorey will not have friends in Council, she has an annoying ferocious tendency to argue for things given her law background, appears abrupt and dismissive, and will absolutely not have the backing of Raffan nor any of the labor councillors. In particularly Raffan and the biased mayor both of which she has had a run in with. It will mean fewer services and even fewer funds as punishment for Canterbury ward residents putting up an independent.
    IMO With a majority labor controlled council and Bankstowns own Mr speed hump “Mayor”. Canterbury ward west is just going to continue to fester onto a pothole-riddled unkempt third world cesspool.

  33. The final results are in for Canterbury ward councillors:
    Clare Raffan (Labor)
    Barbara Coorey ( Independent )
    Jessica Nguyen ( Liberal )
    On that note : Can someone who supports labor please tell me when the councillor for Canterbury Clare Raffan quit the GREENS and became a member of the Labor party? Raffan was a candidate for the greens in Randwick in 2004. Why wasn’t this disclosed prior to the Local government election? Many people would have wanted this important information before they voted.


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