Questions in Parliament

Johnston Questions Macquarie Point Deal Gag

Today I asked the Premier if he intended to gag members of parliament by insisting that any minor redactions they are provided with regarding the Macquarie Point deal be kept confidential.

This would mean that elected Members, effectively, will not be able to ask questions of the government or fully represent the people of Tasmania in the debate over the stadium proposal.

This is preposterous. I, for one, will not accept any “confidential” documents that would restrict my job as a member of parliament.

I will not agree or be party to secrecy.

The Premier did not address my concerns.

Following is the text of my question:

Premier, today you are required by a motion of this house, to table all signed agreements and documents relating to the AFL agreement and all departmental and departmental commissioned assessments, advice and reports relating to the Macquarie Point Stadium.

As has been the hallmark of your government, when it comes to providing information to the public, I expect there to be significant parts of this material redacted. You are also required to provide “minor redactions” – whatever minor redactions means – to all MPs on a confidential basis at the earliest opportunity.

Premier, are you really going to insist on MPs keeping this information confidential when it is effectively a gag and a fetter on the important work that MPs should be doing in holding you accountable when you are spending a billion dollars of Tasmanians money?

And is it your intention to try and tarnish every MP with the same odious secrecy that is rife in your government, leaving ordinary Tasmanians in the dark again about your dodgy deal?

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