First Aus President for IULA-ASPAC

Councillor Peter Woods has been elected President of the Asia-Pacific region of the International Union of Local Authorities (IULA-ASPAC), Local Government's peak worldwide body.

Previously Vice President of IULA-ASPAC, Peter Woods is Mayor of Concord in Sydney, President of the NSW Local Government Association and on the Executive of the Australian Local Government Association.

Elected recently at the IULA Executive meeting in Tokyo, Peter is the first non-Asian elected to this position. He succeeds the Governor of Jakarta, Lieutenant General Surjada.

With IULA-ASPAC stretching from Afghanistan to Tonga, Councillor Woods was unanimously elected by representatives from countries including India, Korea, Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand.

Peter Woods said that he is very honoured to have been elected to this position with the unanimous support of all Asian countries having representatives on the IULA-ASPAC Executive.

"It was in fact the representatives of Asian countries who urged me to stand, which is all the more remarkable given the recent string of racist slurs emanating from some unthinking elements in the Australian community," he said.

"I received unanimous support because I have pledged to fight against all forms of racism and to work in favour of harmony amongst all countries and peoples in the Asian Pacific region."

In holding this position, Councillor Woods also took up his place as Vice President of the World Executive of IULA when it met in Canberra in conjunction with the recent National General Assembly of Local Government.