In what The Greens are calling “a massive win” for the community, Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner announced his immediate resignation today from the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games Intergovernmental Leaders’ Forum.

In a scathing statement, the Lord Mayor declared a loss of faith in the Intergovernmental Leaders’ Forum, branding it a “dysfunctional farce” that serves as a mere façade for decision-making by the State Government behind closed doors.

“I have no doubt there are good alternatives to the full demolition and rebuilding of the Gabba, but the State Government has never genuinely looked for them with an open mind,” Schrinner said.

Cr Schrinner expressed concern that a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity presented by the Games for Brisbane and Queensland is at risk due to ‘mismanagement by the State Government’.

He said his decision to resign follows his longstanding commitment to the success of the Games, dating back to the joint trip with the Premier to Tokyo to secure the 2032 Games.

Despite setbacks and political differences, he said he had been a team player, advocating for collaboration to stage the best-ever Games and deliver a lasting legacy.

However, recent events, including a controversial attempt by the State Government to look for a new stadium at the Brisbane Show Grounds, became the tipping point.

“The State Government’s ham-fisted and foolish attempt to extort Brisbane ratepayers for tens of millions of dollars for a new RNA stadium was the final straw.

 “This truly bizarre approach was undertaken because I had the temerity to back local fans and say Brisbane teams should play in Brisbane while the Gabba is torn down and rebuilt.”

Schrinner vowed not to be bullied into silence and criticised Minister Stirling Hinchliffe’s efforts to pressure the Council with what he said are unreasonable demands for a sports stadium.

Render of new stadium at Brisbane Showgrounds
Render of State Government’s propose new stadium at Brisbane Showgrounds, supplied.

His statement accused the State of using the Games as a political tool and highlighted previous controversial decisions, such as the last-minute redevelopment of the Gabba without consultation.

Schrinner said there is an urgent need for an independent re-evaluation of the Gabba rebuild, proposing the appointment of an independent body.

“I have consistently advocated for the independent Games coordination authority. That’s what the International Olympic Committee was promised.”

Just a week ago, Steven Miles, the Minister for Planning, announced that the Gabba Stadium Project has reached a pivotal milestone with the completion of the Project Validation Report (PVR).

Labor leader in Council, Jared Cassidy, dismissed the Lord Mayor’s decision as a tantrum and dummy spit.

“This is Schrinner trying to distract. He’s doing everything he possibly can to distract from his own failings in slashing Council services and cutting Council projects,” Cr Cassidy said.

Labor Mayoral candidate Tracey Price said a Labor Olympic legacy would result in better public transport, more affordable housing across Brisbane and a historic investment in community and sporting clubs.

“The state government have announced the Gabba rebuild, they’re funding it, they’re managing it, this is their project, and they need to get it right. And a Council legacy should be a suburban legacy and that’s what Labour will get right,” said Cr Cassidy.

The Greens, who have long argued against the Gabba stadium rebuild, which would result in the loss of the heritage-listed East Brisbane State School, held a well-attended rally with community groups last Saturday in Woolloongabba.

The Greens’ Mayoral candidate, Jonathan Sriranganathan, said on social media today that the Mayor’s decision “seems like a big, positive step”.

“This is what it looks like when community campaigns start winning. But let’s not forget that the LNP created this whole mess to begin with by insisting that Brissie should host the Olympics. We could have all saved a lot of time and money if the LNP had changed their mind two years ago.”

South Brisbane MP Amy MacMahon called it “a massive win.”

“After years of pressure from the community and the Greens, the LNP Lord Mayor has finally flipped and withdrawn his support for the Gabba demolition,” MacMahon said.

The Lord Mayor’s resignation raises questions about the State Government’s approach and the future of crucial infrastructure projects associated with the Games.