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Zed Seselja
Zed Seselja.jpg
Minister for International Development and the Pacific
Assumed office
22 December 2020
Prime MinisterScott Morrison
Preceded byAlex Hawke
Assistant Minister for Finance, Charities and Electoral Matters
In office
29 May 2019 – 22 December 2020
Prime MinisterScott Morrison
Preceded byHimself (Treasury and Finance)
Succeeded byBen Morton as Assistant Minister for Electoral Matters
Assistant Minister for Treasury and Finance
In office
28 August 2018 – 29 May 2019
Prime MinisterScott Morrison
Preceded byDavid Coleman
Succeeded byHimself
Jane Hume
Assistant Minister for Science, Jobs and Innovation
In office
20 December 2017 (2017-12-20) – 28 August 2018
Prime MinisterMalcolm Turnbull
MinisterMichaelia Cash
Preceded byCraig Laundy as Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science
Succeeded byvacant
Assistant Minister for Social Services and Multicultural Affairs
In office
18 July 2016 – 20 December 2017 (2017-12-20)
Prime MinisterMalcolm Turnbull
MinisterChristian Porter
Preceded byCraig Laundy (as Assistant Minister for Multicultural Affairs)
Succeeded byAlan Tudge (as Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs
Senator for the Australian Capital Territory
Assumed office
7 September 2013
Preceded byGary Humphries
Leader of the Opposition of the Australian Capital Territory
In office
13 December 2007 – 11 February 2013
Preceded byBill Stefaniak
Succeeded byJeremy Hanson
Member of the Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly
for Brindabella
In office
6 November 2012 – 11 June 2013
Preceded byAmanda Bresnan
Succeeded byNicole Lawder
Member of the Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly
for Molonglo
In office
16 October 2004 – 6 November 2012
Preceded byGreg Cornwell
Succeeded byGiulia Jones
Personal details
Zdenko Matthew Seselja

(1977-03-27) 27 March 1977 (age 44)
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Political partyLiberal Party
Alma materAustralian National University, University of Canberra
WebsiteOfficial Website

Zdenko Matthew "Zed" Seselja (born 27 March 1977) is an Australian politician who has been a Senator for the Australian Capital Territory since 2013, representing the Liberal Party. He has been the Minister for International Development and the Pacific in the Morrison Government since December 2020, and has previously served as an assistant minister in the Morrison and Turnbull Governments since 2016.

Seselja was previously a member of the Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly from 2004 to 2013, and served as leader of the Canberra Liberals and Leader of the Opposition from 2007 to 2013.[1]

Early life and education

Seselja was born in Canberra Hospital, then called the Woden Valley Hospital, to Ljudevit and Katica Seselja, both of whom emigrated separately from Croatia (when it was part of Yugoslavia).[2][3] His mother arrived alone in late 1970, and five months later she married Ljudevit, who had arrived three years earlier. Both held two jobs each.[3]

Seselja attended St Mary MacKillop College.[2] He graduated from the Australian National University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1997, a Bachelor of Laws degree in 1999 and a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice in 2002.[4] He received a Graduate Certificate in Public Administration in 2000 from the University of Canberra. He was admitted as a legal practitioner in 2002.[4]

While attending university, he worked at Woolworths Supermarkets from 1995 to 1998; at MacKillop Catholic College (now St Mary MacKillop College) in 1998 as a cleaner; at the Australian Fisheries Management Authority from 1998 to 1999 as a legal assistant; and at the Commonwealth Department of Transport and Regional Services from 2000 to 2004 as a policy officer, lawyer, and then a senior lawyer.[4]

Political career

Australian Capital Territory

At the 2008 election, Seselja received a quota of 1.49 and was elected first in the seven-member Molonglo electorate. There was a decrease in the vote for both major parties, with a swing to the Greens. Labor won 7 seats, the Liberals won 6 seats, while the Greens won 4 seats, giving them the balance of power. Negotiations ensued between the Greens and both major parties over the formation of a government.[5][6] After almost two weeks of deliberations, the Greens chose to support a minority Labor government, thereby consigning Seselja's party to the opposition benches.[7]

At the 2012 election, Seselja moved to the five member Brindabella electorate where he received a quota of 1.8.[8] He led the Canberra Liberals to their highest-ever number of seats, claiming eight in the seventeen-member ACT Legislative Assembly.

Federal politics

On 4 February 2013, Seselja stated he would challenge incumbent Senator Gary Humphries (who was also a former ACT Liberal leader) for Liberal Party pre-selection for the Senate in the 2013 Australian federal election. Seselja stated he would stand down from leadership of the party in the Legislative Assembly as of Monday 11 February.[9] On 23 February 2013, Seselja won his pre-selection bid, and thus became one of the two official Liberal Party Senate candidates for the ACT.[10]

Seselja was elected Senator for the Australian Capital Territory at the 2013 federal election.[11][12] In 2014, his former opponent Katy Gallagher resigned as ACT Chief Minister to become the ALP Senator from the ACT. With the ACT having two Senate seats, the ACT is represented in the Senate by the two former territory leaders.

During the 2016 Turnbull government second ministerial reshuffle Seselja was appointed as the Assistant Minister for Social Services and Multicultural Affairs. In December 2017 as part of a subsequent rearrangement of the Turnbull ministry, Seselja was appointed as the Assistant Minister for Science, Jobs and Innovation. In August 2018, he resigned from the Turnbull ministry as part of the failed attempt to have Peter Dutton replace Malcolm Turnbull as leader of the Liberal Party and Prime Minister.[citation needed]

When Scott Morrison succeeded Turnbull as prime minister in August 2018, Seselja was appointed Assistant Minister for Treasury and Finance. His portfolio was changed to Assistant Minister for Finance, Charities and Electoral Matters in May 2019 following the 2019 federal election.[13]

Seselja was appointed Minister for International Development and the Pacific on 22 December 2020.[14]

Political views

Seselja's political views have been described as conservative and aligned with the views of former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, although he is a republican.[15][16] He opposes same-sex marriage,[17] supports cutting penalty rates,[18] and opposes assisted suicide.[19] Seselja abstained from the Senate vote[20] on same-sex marriage in November 2017, despite having promised to honour the national postal result three months earlier.

On 15 August 2018, he voted 'no' to the Restoring Territory Rights (Assisted Suicide Legislation) Bill 2015, which would have restored to the Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly the authority to legislate on the matter of voluntary assisted dying.[21][22]

Personal life

Seselja is a Roman Catholic.[23][24] He and his wife Roslyn have five children. He is currently a patron/supporter of Karinya House, a member of the Australian Republican Movement and the Australian Red Cross, a volunteer for St. Vincent de Paul, and a KeepWatch Ambassador with the Royal Lifesaving Society (since 2008); he was formerly a mentor for Menslink from 2001 to 2004.[4]


  1. ^ "Canberra Liberals official website". Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  2. ^ a b "Zed Seselja". Liberal Party of Australia. 23 July 2013. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  3. ^ a b Thomson, Phillip (17 March 2013). "Seselja's journey is a family affair". The Canberra Times. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  4. ^ a b c d "Seselja, Zed". ACT Legislative Assembly. Archived from the original on 3 October 2013.
  5. ^ "2008 Australian Capital Territory Election". ABC. 18 October 2008. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  6. ^ "Greens take extra seat in ACT election". 25 October 2008. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  7. ^ "Labor to form minority government in ACT". 31 October 2008. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  8. ^ Results by party,; accessed 6 February 2013.
  9. ^ "Zed Seselja moves into Federal politics", ABC News Online, 4 February 2013.
  10. ^ "Seselja beats Humphries in Senate preselection stand-off", The Canberra Times, 23 February 2013.
  11. ^ "Seselja wins Senate seat, talks PS job losses". The Canberra Times. Retrieved 2 October 2013.
  12. ^ "Length of tenure for Senators in States and Territories". Australian Senate: Powers, practice and procedures. Parliament of Australia. Retrieved 28 February 2019.
  13. ^ "Senator the Hon Zed Seselja". Parliament of Australia. Retrieved 11 July 2020.
  14. ^ "Senator the Hon Zed Seselja". Parliament of Australia. Archived from the original on 23 February 2021. Retrieved 23 February 2021.
  15. ^ Peake, Ross (28 March 2013). "What lies beyond a process bathed in bad blood?". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 27 March 2013.
  16. ^ Peake, Ross (4 February 2013). "Seselja's bid for Senate seat a win for the Greens". Canberra Times. Retrieved 27 March 2013.
  17. ^ Fettes, James (28 June 2016). "Seselja 'likely' to abstain from same-sex marriage vote". ABC News.
  18. ^ Conifer, political reporter Dan (23 December 2015). "Liberal senator breaks ranks to push for Sunday penalty rate cut". ABC News.
  19. ^ Seselja, Zed (13 August 2018). "Why I'm voting 'no' on the assisted suicide bill: Seselja". The Sydney Morning Herald (Website).
  20. ^ McIlroy, Tom (30 November 2017). "ACT Liberal Senator Zed Seselja backtracks on pledge to honour same-sex marriage vote". Canberra Times. Retrieved 22 August 2018.
  21. ^ "JOURNALS OF THE SENATE" (PDF). 2018.
  22. ^ Burgess, Katie (16 August 2018). "'This is not the end': ACT reels after Senate rejects territory rights". Canberra Times. Retrieved 22 August 2018.
  23. ^ Alexander, Cathy (5 February 2013). "And then there were none: ACT Lib moderate faces the chop". Crikey. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  24. ^ Moloney, John-Paul (24 September 2012). "Anti-gay candidate 'like the Taliban': Seselja". The Canberra Times. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 13 September 2013.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Alex Hawke
Minister for International Development and the Pacific
Preceded by
Craig Laundy
as Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science
Assistant Minister for Science, Jobs and Innovation
Succeeded by
Position abolished
Preceded by
Craig Laundy
as Assistant Minister for Multicultural Affairs
Assistant Minister for Social Services and Multicultural Affairs
Succeeded by
Alan Tudge
as Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs
Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly
Preceded by
Greg Cornwell
Member of the Legislative Assembly
for Molonglo

Multi-member electorate
Multi-member electorate Member of the Legislative Assembly
for Brindabella

Succeeded by
Nicole Lawder
Political offices
Preceded by
Bill Stefaniak
Leader of the Opposition of the Australian Capital Territory
Succeeded by
Jeremy Hanson
Party political offices
Preceded by
Bill Stefaniak
Leader of the Liberal Party in the Australian Capital Territory
Succeeded by
Jeremy Hanson
This page was last edited on 3 September 2021, at 01:42
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