IT’S ABOUT CHOICE – OUR CHOICE; NOT THE SOUTH-EASTS!
On Wednesday 4 September 2019, during the sitting of Parliament in Townsville, the Member for Whitsunday asked the following question of the Premier Anastasia Palaszczuk: ” .. will the Premier commit to a referendum on statehood for North Queensland?’
Here is the question and the reply:
FIRST SESSION OF THE FIFTY-SIXTH PARLIAMENT Wednesday, 4 September 2019
Questions Without Notice 2709
North Queensland, Statehood
Mr COSTIGAN: My question is to the Premier and Minister for Trade. With parliament finally returning to Townsville after a 17-year hiatus and given the current community sentiment, will the Premier commit to a referendum on statehood for North Queensland?
Ms PALASZCZUK: I thank the member for Whitsunday for the question. Let me say from the outset: I love Townsville and I love Queensland, and under my watch I am never going to see a divided Queensland. I love this state. I love our State of Origin team. We will always commit to making sure that we deliver for Queenslanders no matter where they live. I love this state. I love the people and I know that every single member of my team is absolutely passionate about the communities that they represent.
It gives me great pride to bring the government and the parliament to Townsville and those on this side of the House loved coming to Townsville—unlike those opposite. No wonder they did not want to come to Townsville. With their track record, I would not want to come here either if I was them! Members of the former Newman cabinet are still here and if there is one thing I can say it is this: you cannot trust the LNP. I know that the community members of Townsville—the families of Townsville— will never forget.
Mr Mander: We’ll find out.
Mr COSTIGAN: Mr Speaker, I rise to a point of order. I have given the Premier plenty of time to answer the question, but I rise on relevance. I asked about a referendum—
Mr SPEAKER: Thank you, member for Whitsunday. Premier, regarding the question asked, do you have anything further to add?
Mrs Frecklington interjected.
Ms PALASZCZUK: Absolutely, Mr Speaker, and I will take the Leader of the Opposition’s interjection. It was a dixer. It was an absolute dixer today in that I love this state. The people of Queensland love this state and we work best when we all work together. When we are united, we can do anything and I firmly believe that Queensland’s best days are ahead of us. We have so much potential. There is so much optimism. It is the people of this state working together that continue to work in the best interests of their families, and we will continue to deliver for them.
As we head towards the State election in October 2020, there is one question north Queenslanders want answered from all candidates:
“Do you support the people of the North having a democratic choice on whether to become the 7th State?”