Pre­mier should get on with the State’s busi­ness at hand

Pilbara News - - Opinion - Jac­qui Boy­dell, Port Hed­land Mem­ber for Min­ing and Pas­toral Re­gion Deputy Leader of The Na­tion­als WA

One of Aus­tralia’s great­est at­tributes is our fair and eq­ui­table sys­tem of democ­racy.

Here in WA, any sand­groper — whether rich or poor, influential or oth­er­wise — can run for Par­lia­ment and rep­re­sent their com­mu­nity in State Par­lia­ment.

While The Na­tion­als were not re­turned to Gov­ern­ment at the re­cent State elec­tion, we re­spect the out­come and the peo­ple’s right to elect their pre­ferred gov­ern­ment of the day. We will al­ways de­fend this im­por­tant demo­cratic right, even when the out­come doesn’t de­liver us our favoured out­come.

On the con­trary, new Pre­mier Mark Mc­Gowan be­lieves the peo­ple of WA got it wrong when they cast their vote at the bal­lot box on March 11 be­cause he doesn’t agree with the re­cent elec­tion out­come in the Up­per House.

As the House of re­view, the Leg­isla­tive Coun­cil is an im­por­tant cog in the par­lia­men­tary process, which ensures leg­is­la­tion is sub­ject to an ap­pro­pri­ate level of over­sight and scrutiny be­fore it be­comes law.

Mr Mc­Gowan seems to think the role of the Up­per House is to sim­ply rub­ber-stamp de­ci­sions of the Lower House. This shows his dis­re­gard for the im­por­tance of ro­bust de­bate and in-depth con­sid­er­a­tion of leg­is­la­tion to de­liver the best pos­si­ble demo­cratic out­comes.

On March 11, the peo­ple of WA made a de­lib­er­ate de­ci­sion to elect the Up­per House it has elected and it is now up to the Pre­mier to work with the out­come and the hand he has been dealt.

At a time when ev­ery­day Aus­tralians have lost faith in the ma­jor par­ties, Mr Mc­Gowan has the nerve to ques­tion the demo­cratic process that has de­liv­ered the cur­rent Par­lia­ment.

It’s clear WA’s cur­rent Up­per House for­ma­tion is a symp­tom of voter dis­con­tent with the ma­jor two and the Pre­mier should lis­ten be­cause this is democ­racy at play. He now wants to change the way the Up­per House is elected be­cause it doesn’t suit his agenda.

The Na­tion­als be­lieve elected rep­re­sen­ta­tives should show po­lit­i­cal courage, ques­tion the party line and be free to vote in the best in­ter­ests of their con­stituents — this does not oc­cur within the ma­jor par­ties.

We know West Aus­tralians un­der­stand the power of their vote and we are there­fore op­posed to any changes that would di­min­ish the voice of re­gional WA in State Par­lia­ment.

We re­main firmly com­mit­ted to en­sure re­gional peo­ple are ad­e­quately and ef­fec­tively rep­re­sented.

As an in­de­pen­dent po­lit­i­cal party, it is our right and re­spon­si­bil­ity to con­sider ev­ery sin­gle piece of leg­is­la­tion on its mer­its to en­sure it de­liv­ers the best pos­si­ble deal for our con­stituents.

The peo­ple of re­gional WA should ex­pect us to do this to get them the best pos­si­ble deal.

In­stead of ques­tion­ing the demo­cratic process, I sug­gest the Pre­mier get on with the busi­ness at hand.

Pre­mier Mark Mc­Gowan

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.