Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis is not suffering from leukaemia, as rumoured around the Clarence Valley, but he has been diagnosed with a rare blood disorder that has resulted in hospitalisation.
Mr Gulaptis spent several weeks in hospital mid-year suffering pneumonia and more recently spent several days recovering from a condition most likely related to his blood disorder.
“I haven’t been well,” Mr Gulaptis said. “I don’t have leukaemia, I have a blood disorder, which is treatable, is being treated … and it’s under control.
“According to my haematologist I will live a long and fruitful life.
“When it’s a blood disorder people automatically think the worst.
“Without being treated it could develop into something serious.”
Mr Gulaptis said he had been diagnosed with a “gene positive myeloproliferative disorder” and is “taking a drug which is targeting the area that is responsible for my white blood cells being out of whack”.
Meanwhile, the Independent has followed up on related rumours about councillors Greg Clancy (Greens), Peter Ellem (Labor) and Richie Williamson (Nationals) having been preselected to run at a state election, which, without a by-election, is not due until March 2019.
Councillor Clancy said he had not been preselected but would “consider [nominating] when the time comes”.
Councillor Ellem said he had not been pre-selected, nor was he “considering running at the moment”.
“I’m happy doing my job as a councillor,” he said, “particularly with my work on committees such as the regional library, sports, coastal management, gallery and the ‘freedom camping’ working party, which he chaired.
He said Labor has said it will field candidates in every NSW seat, but the timing of pre-selection was up to the branches.
Councillor Richie Williamson said he “didn’t expect that there will be a by-election”, nor had he been to Sydney to be groomed for the seat of Clarence in the event of a by-election.