Twitter and Facebook posts by Mario Romaldi about former Labor prime minister Julia Gillard. (Twitter/Facebook)
A board member of the South Australian Multicultural and Ethnic Affairs Commission (SAMEAC) has resigned after the Opposition unearthed his old social media posts referring to former prime minister Julia Gillard as a “reckless backstabbing lesbian”.
In another post read out in Parliament by Labor multicultural affairs spokeswoman Katrine Hildyard today, businessman Mario Romaldi also called Ms Gillard a “patronising bitch”.
“Labor is being led by some reckless backstabbing lesbian!!!” he wrote on Facebook, Ms Hildyard told State Parliament.
Mr Romaldi also posted a photo of himself standing in front of a dartboard covered in images of Ms Gillard, describing it as “My favourite Xmas pressie”, Ms Hildyard said.
Premier Steven Marshall and Assistant Multicultural Affairs Minister Jing Lee appointed Mr Romaldi to the board in June.
In a statement, Mr Marshall said he had “spoken with Mr Romaldi regarding accusations raised in the Parliament this afternoon”.
“Mr Romaldi regrets the nature of the comments that he made on social media some years ago,” Mr Marshall said.
“Mr Romaldi has offered me his resignation from the SAMEAC board and I have accepted [it].”
Earlier this afternoon, Opposition leader Peter Malinauskas called on Mr Marshall to sack Mr Romaldi from the commission.
“If the SAMEAC board is there to provide a leadership function … to send messages to our community about the sort of society that we live in, then it’s absolutely essential all members of that board uphold decent principles and do not make offensive public social media posts,” Mr Malinauskas said.
Ms Hildyard said it was disappointing Mr Romaldi was appointed after the Liberal Government replaced 11 of the 12 members of the SAMEAC board following its election victory in March.
“It’s highly disturbing the Premier has appointed somebody who holds such appalling views about women, views that do not promote social cohesion,” Ms Hildyard said.
“I am offended as a woman by these views, they are utterly unacceptable and shocking, and the Premier must act to remove this person.”
The SAMEAC website says Mr Romaldi is the managing director of Romaldi Constructions, Adelaide Plumbing Pty Ltd and Premier Civil.
It describes his involvement in community organisations including Radio Italiana, the Bosa Soccer Club and the Italian Earthquake Appeal.
Mr Marshall earlier told Parliament that none of the allegations about Mr Romaldi had been raised with the Government before Question Time.