The state member for Mundingburra, Coralee O’Rourke, has announced she will not be contesting the seat at the upcoming Queensland state election.
She was elected in 2015.
In a statement on Facebook, the north Queensland-based Labor MP wrote she had been honest with her community about her battle with breast cancer.
“I have been open about the treatment I have received, the status of my recovery and my longstanding desire to always return and resume my service to the Mundingburra community,” she said.
“Following additional surgery in recent weeks, I have come to the realisation that I need to focus all my attention on my health — for my wellbeing, for my family, and for our community — and that is why I’ve had to make this difficult decision.”
Ms O’Rourke cited the north Queensland stadium, more police for Townsville and “standing up for workers when Queensland Nickel closed its doors” as some of her proudest achievements.
“It has been my greatest privilege to serve the community of Mundingburra for the past five years as their elected member, and it has been the biggest honour of my life to serve Queenslanders as the Minister for Communities and Minister for Disability Services and Seniors,” she said.
The Premier sent out a short statement soon after her announcement that said Ms O’Rourke had been a valued minister in her Government.
“I am sad that she will not recontest her seat but family and health come first,” Annastacia Palaszczuk said.
“I wish Coralee all the best for the future.”
Mundingburra is one of Labor’s most marginal seats.
It is held by 1.1 per cent.
Labor has less that two months to get traction with a new, potentially unknown candidate in the seat.
State Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington told ABC Radio Brisbane she wished Ms O’Rourke well.
“This is someone who has been battling with health issues over the last couple of years and I just really wish her all the best for the future,” she said.