‘Forgotten’ retirees call on Clive to end resort dispute
RETIREES locked in a ferocious battle with Clive Palmer have called on the billionaire to settle their dispute in light of his promise to pay out Queensland Nickel workers.
Shareholders in the mothballed Palmer Coolum Resort, where a fierce four-year battle between the billionaire and mum and dad investors has reached fever pitch, say they feel "forgotten".
Once the jewel in the Sunshine Coast's tourism crown, the resort was "temporarily" closed for refurbishment in 2015, putting 600 staff out of work, leaving shareholders of the resort's 144 villas in limbo and punching a gaping hole in the region's tourism industry.
The retirees each paid between $50,000 and $100,000 for a quarter share of a villa in the resort where power and water have been cut, leaving their "unsellable" investments to crumble.
"I hope the Townsville people do get their money but what about us," shareholder Maree Frecklington said.
"We've been waiting for years and that's what really upsets me.
"It was part of our retirement fund for all of us going on to the next stage of our lives."
Ms Frecklington, the mother-in-law of State Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington, said she hoped the billionaire would end the long-running dispute with the retirees who bought into the resort.
She said she was concerned the last-minute promise to pay unpaid workers could sway voters in his favour.
"I worry a lot of people will fall for it," she said. "It's very scary."