No Land Tax party leader Peter Jones has dismissed allegations of verbal abuse and aggression as “colourful language” after a letter emerged from the NSW Electoral Commission warning staff about his alleged behaviour.
The electoral commission issued a warning to its staff before the March 28 election in a letter, which was given to AAP by a returning officer.
The allegations surfaced as an AVO application against Mr Jones came before Parramatta Local Court on Tuesday.
The letter, which did not detail the incident, said the matter had been reported to police.
‘Mr Jones was verbally abusive and displayed aggressive behaviour towards the returning officer,’ returning officer manager Jill Johnson said in the letter.
‘If Mr Jones visits any other pre-poll venue this week … Answer any questions from him factually but do not engage in any discussion.’
Staff were advised to call the police if Mr Jones became abusive.
But Mr Jones dismissed the letter.
‘That’s rubbish,’ he told AAP.
‘I have been known to swear and use colourful language, always in a fairly good humoured way.
‘I have never been anything but impeccably polite to returning officers.’
The comments come after an application hearing in Parramatta for an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) against Mr Jones was adjourned on Tuesday.
Communications, Electrical, and Plumbing Union secretary Jim Metcher applied for an AVO over a series of alleged profane and threatening text messages.
The senior union official alleged in court documents that Mr Jones harassed him following an interview with 2GB on March 17.
Mr Jones allegedly called Mr Metcher three times that day between 10.14am and 10.30am, before texting him saying: ‘You’re such a f***ing coward. Answer your f***ing phone.’
He then allegedly continued to call and text Mr Metcher, saying: ‘You’re so f***ed’, until the union worker went to police fearful for the safety of his family and himself.
The documents allege Mr Jones has anger problems and has been admitted to a psychiatric ward in the past.
When asked whether he struggled with anger management, Mr Jones rejected the claim.
‘Me? No I don’t,’ he told AAP.
The case was adjourned until May 12.
The party leader also confirmed payments will soon begin to thousands of election-day workers, who were promised $330 for the day’s work.
More than 3000 people were employed, leaving the party’s bill for workers at around $1 million.
‘Payments will start this week,’ he told AAP.