My interview with Richo and Jones

Here’s my interview with Graham Richardson and Alan Jones on Sky TV
 

 

 

Professional development necessary for JPs

Member for Gaven Dr Alex Douglas MP says it is important that Justices of the Peace and Commissioners of Declarations attend professional development days to keep abreast with changes.

Dr Douglas was speaking at a professional development seminar he hosted for more than 60 JPs and Commissioners of Declarations at Nerang Bicentennial Community Centre yesterday.

“During the seminar it became evident there were additional forms required to be signed and witnessed by JPs following  recent legislation changes. For example, this has resulted in JPs being required to sign off on DNA papers and tattoo parlour registration, as well as a real growth in the number of enduring powers of attorney being formalised.

“The JPs Branch which ran the seminar is now concentrating on providing professional development for JPs rather than training to become a JP which is done by registered training organisations.

“I’m pleased with the emphasis on professional development because many JPs at the seminar had been long-serving, with a number receiving awards for 40 year services, and obviously over that period of time there have been major changes in our legislation and signing regulations.

“These people  put many hours of voluntary service into serving the community, often at shopping centres, and deserve the gratitude of the public, although frequently their work goes unnoticed.

“In my electorate office, I have  a staff member who is a Commissioner for Declarations and there are few days when she isn’t required to witness signatures and documents, and in one case she witnessed the signing of 85 affidavits in one sitting.

“It is important to constantly update your knowledge and very reassuring to know the Justice Department is willing to support and answer questions at any time.”

Police blitz around Nerang schools – 300 motorists stopped

Member for Gaven Dr Alex Douglas MP says he fully supports Nerang police who have intercepted and breath-tested 300 drivers during a five-day blitz around all schools in the police division.

“I’m appalled that motorists who appear to be time-poor with no understanding of safety around our schools are infringing and putting our children’s lives at risk,” he said.

“The safety of children is of the utmost importance before and after school and I’m unhappy that so many motorists pay no attention to their well-being.

“The highest speed detected was 78 km in a 40 km zone which resulted in an infringement notice, penalty of $531 and the loss of six demerit points.

“I agree with Nerang’s Officer in Charge, Senior Sgt Peter Gordon that there is no excuse for double parking, parking on continuous yellow lines, parking in bus zones or on footpaths.

“Motorists are not only obstructing the views of other motorists and endangering lives, but they are giving lame excuses like ‘I’ve always parked here’ which also resulted in many infringement notices being issued.

“I commend Peter Gordon and his team of dedicated police officers. These offences are unacceptable given that the safety of our children in school zones is of prime importance.

“Results from the blitz shows that parking related infringements were prevalent.  Additionally, 4 people were charged on 5 offences including driving motor vehicles whilst unlicensed resulting in them being  required to appear in court.

“I understand further campaigns will be held in the near future.”

Statement by Dr Alex Douglas at today’s media conference

Dr Douglas outlined his reasons for quitting the Palmer United Party  at a media conference in Nerang this morning. Here is the transcript:

“Thank you for your time here this morning ladies and gentlemen and the very early start that many of you have been forced  to make to get here. It is deeply appreciated.

“Well, I don’t have to tell you the truth about what’s happening in Queensland politics these days. You all know the truth, even if some of you are not being allowed to write  or report it, that will eventually change  - I can assure you. But it reminds me of the line in Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland ‘curiouser and curiouser’  said Alice. Well, I think if you listen to this you might find you are wondering if we’ve all fallen down the rabbit hole.  A few nights ago, I received a text message from Mr Palmer, ‘Anyway the candidate for Broadwater  has been announced by the party, that’s it !’  I asked Mr Palmer who this candidate was,  keeping in mind some really interested members had shown an interest in Broadwater. I was told it is his wife’s brother. I was stunned. I have met him on occasions as he is the PUP’s photographer. A nice quiet fellow. He has never spoken with me about a desire to enter politics. 

“Mr Palmer then went on to  tell me that he had sent a newsletter to the Broadwater Electorate residents introducing his brother-in-law. This is the first I had heard of it. And yet I was supposed to be the Queensland Parliamentary PUP leader. The executive pre-selections rapidly progressed with not only his brother-in-law being preselected,  but also his son, his former footballer/helper, his PUP senator’s spouse, his electorate officer, his Titanic director, his two nephews, his close family friend and  his son, his  in -house solicitor, one of his staffer’s husband and his cleaning contractor. This is all when PUP had genuine members willing  to nominate for these Queensland seats. 

“Clive Palmer was initially a breath of fresh air in 2013;  he promised that he would confront the problem of corruption in Queensland under the Campbell Newman Government  head-on. Not only would the party  attempt to stop the widespread problem of lobbyists dictating policy, but also prosecuting arguments against mates being granted preferred business deals with the government to the detriment of the public interest.

“As you know, my wife Susie who is standing next to me today, stood side by side with Mr Palmer as he promised the nation that he would start a party which would unite people. A membership drive was announced and thousands of families across Australia joined as members.

“Prior to this party forming,  I had left the LNP in November 2012 after they had used a false claim of me wanting to leave the Ethics Committee when there were major issues facing that committee. My LNP replacement subsequently disgraced himself publicly. This pattern of political interference in serious matters is endemic in the LNP.

“Soon after that, Mr Palmer asked me as a sitting member if I would register his party in Queensland and be its leader. I agreed because I believed in these values and his apparent determination to root out corruption that was crippling the economy of Queensland and continues to do so.

“What has occurred subsequently, despite a very significant federal election campaign,  has been a progressive slide into what I believe is a single person road show.

“For the past fifteen months there has been no formal state party structure for me to work with and no commitment  for policy formation despite Mr Judge and I asking on many occasions. Mr Palmer actively sought to prevent the formation of policy, he prevented membership input and members have not been allowed to conduct  meetings anywhere in the state. It is same contempt that the LNP had for their members when Campbell Newman made all of their policies null and void, despite years of preparation and stakeholder consultation. The implication is that when PUP in Qld wins seats,  Clive Palmer will be doing exactly the same thing that the LNP and Labor have been guilty of. There is now no difference between any of them. They are not interested in the betterment of the public. They are only interested in themselves.

“For the last six months I have been asking for input into the selection of good quality, grassroots local champion candidates.  I expected that there would be many good candidates come through our membership base.

“In the last 48 hours it has become apparent that in the winnable seats ordinary members have been excluded in favour of Palmer staff, his family and his family friends. Mr Palmer texted me yesterday and said that I would find out the full list of his first thirty candidates on the PUP web site. He stated this despite  originally agreeing to have a meeting with  Mr Judge  and I on this matter prior to any announcements  being made. Mr Palmer in a text  told me that as State leader I can have no input into the pre-selection process and yet he expected me to be available to promote his candidates. It came to a head the night before last when I said that I would not accept his close family and staff as candidates as they are largely not community champions. If they were well known community champions, I would be supportive. His excuse as to why he selected family, staff and friends is that they are the only people he can trust.

“My reason for leaving was that I could not support a campaign run with candidates who would be nothing more than mouthpieces for Mr Palmer and not responsive to their community as ordinary members would be. Susie and I believe that Queenslanders deserve so much better than this because this state and its people are hurting – and it  needs to be exposed and cleaned up

There’s a famous quote of Louis Dembitz Brandeis, the  American litigator, that says sunlight is the best disinfectant – Well, we’re are living in the sunshine state, so bring on the disinfectant and let’s get on with the job of cleaning this place up. I will stay on as an independent and continue with my task to eradicate corruption in this state and the denial of legitimate rights of the public.”

Media Conference – tomorrow

MEDIA ALERT

 Dr Alex Douglas MP talks about his resignation from Palmer United Party

 When: Tomorrow, August 12 at 8.30 am

 Where: Gaven Electorate Office, 4/12 Ferry St, Nerang