13 November, 2014. 11:30
DAVID ANDREWS | Brisbane Correspondent | David.Andrews@betootaadvocate.com
The Australian Federal Government is today in panic mode after it was discovered that the Brisbane venue selected to host this years G20 Summit has accidentally double booked.
With proceedings due to commence in the next 24 hours, officials are now scrambling to locate a new space.
In a statement today, G20 organizers strongly denied any error on their part. They noted that they had received a confirmation email and booking number but that it seemed nothing could change the minds of the venue management.
Consequentially, the criticism has now been directed towards the summits would-be meeting place, The Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.
The Centre’s acting manager, Bridgette Folau, has stated that she believes a junior member of staff may be to blame.
“We’ve launched an internal investigation into the matter but at this stage believe it was a simple clerical mistake made by an intern,”
She continued by saying it was unfortunate but that it was not that big a deal,
“We are sorry but double bookings do happen from time to time, we’ll refund the deposit and I hope we can all move on.”
Despite their best efforts, Queensland’s Newman Government has thus far been unable to convince the other party to postpone their events.
Spero Konstitopous, the patriarch of the multi-million dollar Konstitopous Concrete empire, had booked out the space in early july, to celebrate his youngest daughter’s birthday. Konstitopous says he has been appalled by the official reactions.
Speaking exclusively to the Betoota Advocate, the family expressed disappointment over what they call an overreaction by a “self-entitled Queensland Government”.
They have also affirmed that they will not be caving to pressures and have full intentions to go ahead with the ‘jungle themed’ sweet 16th.
As a result, Brisbane schools, churches and community centres have all thrown their hands up – offering to host the gatherings. The government is yet to rule out the possibility of this more localized approach.
The event, which will see over four thousand international delegates descend on Brisbane, has already courted controversy over failing to include climate change in their discussions. G20 is also under scrutiny for their responses to Indigenous affairs, multinational tax evasion, corruption and the Islamic State, although current organizers now fear that this mix-up may be the biggest issue of all.
David Andrews is a former lecturer at Brisbane’s Shaftson College, the same university that guided him through his PHD in Agribusiness. He has worked and lived in many different parts of the world, including ten years as a pearl diver for the Paspalley’s out of Broome. A former state wicketkeeper and a vocal supporter of Brisbane’s LGBTI community, David lives in the inner-city suburb of New Farm with his wife, Xiaou and their five daughters.