Opinion

'Four year terms an attack on Queensland democracy'

Do you support four years terms in Queensland?
Do you support four years terms in Queensland? Brett Wortman/bw173427i

The move to extend Queensland's parliamentary terms to four years has been dubbed capricious marking the end for democracy and accountability in the State.

Brisbane lawyer, community activist and republic campaigner, David Muir believes the upcoming referendum has been deliberately kept absent from public debate as the Queensland Government makes a stealthy grab for political power.

"This referendum is a vote on an extremely important public issue and so far Queenslanders have not been privy to the implications," Mr Muir said.

"Queensland is already the most vulnerable State in Australia because it's the only State without a House of Review.

"Laws can be passed in one day without proper scrutiny or debate. I believe democracy in Queensland is under threat with both sides of politics joining together in a bid to extend their parliamentary terms by one year."

Mr Muir is well known as a champion for a direct election model for a republic and was an elected delegate to the 1998 Constitutional Convention.

He says the vote on an extra year in parliamentary terms addresses the Queensland Constitution, but both sides of politics have worked together to keep it away from public scrutiny.

"This referendum will be held under cover of the local authority elections," he said.

"There needs to be rigorous public debate on this referendum. All Queenslanders have a right to be aware of the implications of giving a dominant and powerful Executive an extra year in office.

FOUR YEAR TERMS: The case for Yes

"Queensland has no adequate checks and balances against tyranny or capricious law making.

"Parliament is further weakened in Queensland by the dominance of the Executive which
controls our only House of Parliament.

FOUR YEAR TERMS: The case for No

"Our parliamentary committees are not entrenched and can simply be ignored.

"The role of Speaker has been weakened. In fact, once again both sides of politics have acted together to do so."

"This is all about accountability. I am very worried about a 'one house' parliament dominated
by an executive getting so entrenched without recourse for an extra year."

David Muir has been asked to present the NO case on the referendum by the Queensland chapter of the Australian Study of Parliament Group (ASPG) at a public forum in Parliament House in early March.
 

Topics:  editors picks, four year terms, opinion, referendum


Join the Community.

Get your local news, your way.

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Munna Pt big morning tea fits like a dove

CUPPA ANYONE? Karen Dineen, of Noosa River Holiday Park, and Kate Hegge get in the mood for the Biggest Morning Tea they are hosting this Friday.

Noosa River Holiday Park big morning tea

Noosa votes for case by case roadside memorial limit

Noosa has a new roadside memorial policy.

Noosa sets roadside memorial policy

Cold shoulder to bat proposal

Flying foxes are in the headlines again.

Noosa bats protest meeting

Latest deals and offers

Noosa Food and Wine festival a huge financial boost

Under clear blue skies the weekend’s Food and Wine 2016 proved a runaway success, with sell-out events and millions of dollars injected into the Noosa economy.

Munna Pt big morning tea fits like a dove

CUPPA ANYONE? Karen Dineen, of Noosa River Holiday Park, and Kate Hegge get in the mood for the Biggest Morning Tea they are hosting this Friday.

Noosa River Holiday Park big morning tea

Noosa votes for case by case roadside memorial limit

Noosa has a new roadside memorial policy.

Noosa sets roadside memorial policy

Cold shoulder to bat proposal

Flying foxes are in the headlines again.

Noosa bats protest meeting

Running is just wedded bliss for tri couple

POWERING ON: Beth Gerdes and Luke McKenzie are a real triathlon power couple, just happy to kick back at the Noosa Ultimate Sports Festival.

Tri power couple ready for Noosa's Ultimate Sports Festival

City’s most eligible bachelors go up for auction

Australia's favourite redhead twins and celebrity bachelors Stevie and Andy Mac will perform and be auctioned off at the Pink Hope Charity Male Auction Gala.

All women need to do is bid for the man who catches their eye

IBAC Evidence Police Bashing 5

Officers drag the woman back to her cell

In this video the woman drinks water from the toilet.

IBAC Evidence Police Bashing 4

In this video the woman asks for water as the tap in the room is broken

IBAC Evidence Police Bashing 3

In this video police continue their search and male officers are present despite...

Sale nears on last large block of land in Coolum

The 43.37ha property on South Coolum Rd has sold.

South Coolum Rd property to be land banked

Caloundra’s former Centrepoint Buffet site up for sale

FOR SALE: The home of the old Centrepoint Buffet

Restaurant fined for unhygienic practices closed months ago