Law applies to MPS too
A MOMENTARY lapse of concentration and you have driven at 10km per hour over the speed limit, forgetfully you made a minor omission on your tax return, mistakenly you got the size of your catch wrong? Did you get away with it? No, of course not, you received a fine because the “law is the law” and if you break the law there are consequences – that is unless you are a politician, or so it seems.
First Billy Gordon, MP elected as ALP member to the Queensland Parliament with a criminal conviction, now serving as an independent despite other matters casting long shadows on his suitability as a representative of the people.
Matt Canavan, National MP said his mother obtained his Italian citizenship without his knowledge when he was 25 years old. I bet the Italian authorities would be interested in speaking to his mother about this application made on behalf of her adult son. I have friends of Italian descent who are not finding it so easy to obtain an Italian citizenship.
What is wrong with the political parties that fail to exercise due diligence when nominating prospective political candidates? Where are the references, the background checks, and most important of all a National Police Certificate. I suspect all that is needed is a certain braggadocio from a candidate to sail through the selection process.
As a recent immigrant to Australia, to obtain residency I had to supply a sponsor’s reference, six character references, two police checks, medical records, financial details, my own statement and all this was done under the guidance of an expert migration agent to ensure the application was correct.
Even now as a resident I still occasionally ask the migration agent “can I, or should I de- clare this or that”. And now I employ a lawyer on both sides of the world to ensure all my UK affairs follow me to Australia in a proper manner. I have no complaints about this rigorous vetting procedure so why is similar vetting seemingly not applied to prospective political candidates?
Next to Queensland’s Malcolm Roberts, a One Nation MP who considers it sufficient just to declare that he has renounced his British citizenship before carrying on his campaign and subsequent election. There are reasons there is ‘ due process’ in renouncing British citizenship, forms must be cor- rectly submitted, suitable documentation must be approved and fees paid. Only at the end of this process if all is present and correct will British citizenship be ended.
This point for Malcolm Roberts came after he was elected to Parliament. It would be interesting to know if Pauline Hanson was made aware at the time of this chain of events in late 2016. It will be for others to judge if Malcolm Roberts is true to the statement he made in his first speech to parliament when he said “People can be confident that I will advocate for them authentically, from my heart, always in the national interest. I will show the highest ethical standards in my advocacy”.
Perhaps as a first step to demonstrating “the highest ethical standards” Malcolm Roberts will step down until all inquiries are complete.
I do hope the Parliamentary Ethics Committee, the police and others are taking a keen interest in these MPs. Should any MP be found lacking they should be prosecuted and if guilty reimburse the public purse by paying back all salaries and expenses claimed as an MP. GREG SEXTON, Taylors Beach.