5th March 2008 The State Coalition revealed wrongly-addressed return envelopes were sent out with ballot papers for the local government elections in the Balonne Shire but was less than impressed with the Bligh government’s response in State Parliament this morning.
Shadow Local Government & Planning Minister Howard Hobbs asked the Attorney-General what he knew of the error and what assurance he had that similar problems weren’t occurring in other areas of the State.
“I refer to the Queensland Electoral Commission running the local government elections …are you aware that postal ballot papers distributed in the Balonne Shire, based at St George, were sent out with incorrect return-mail-envelopes to direct the ballot papers to the returning-officer at the Southern Downs Regional Council in Warwick,” Mr Hobbs asked Minister responsible, Attorney-General Kerry Shine.
“Minister how many other stuff-ups are happening across the State and what action will you take to ensure no candidate is disadvantaged,” he also asked.
Mr Hobbs said he was less than impressed with the Attorney-General’s answer.
“He had nothing to say …apart from he’d look into it .. hardly good enough.
“All I can say is this whole process has been flawed from the very start.
“This process being undertaken by the Queensland Electoral Commission needs to be beyond reproach. It needs to be a fair Local Government election for both the candidates and the voters and it also needs to be seen to be fair. That’s part of a democracy,” Mr Hobbs said.
“This is Queensland and our system of Government is supposed to be democratic, however the way the Bligh Government tramples over people’s rights and dictates the union and socialist agenda, many are left wondering what is left of our democracy,” he said.
Media Contact – Howard Hobbs 07 46 22 88 88