Katter Party unveils Opposition Cabinet to take on Newman
KATTER'S Australian Party has unleashed a plan to take the role of Opposition in Queensland politics, revealing a shadow ministry of aspiring MPs to act as government scrutineers.
The move appears to be inspired by Premier Campbell Newman's stint as acting Queensland Opposition Leader even before he was elected to Parliament in 2012.
KAP leader Ray Hopper said more than 30 reinforcements would bolster the strength of the party, which currently held three seats, half the number held by the Labor Opposition.
Rather than having its trio of members trying to grapple with every policy issue, these may now be delegated to KAP members dotted throughout Queensland.
The team was chosen six weeks ago by Mr Hopper and party national director Aidan McLidon.
It is a move likely to infuriate both major parties, particularly the LNP considering Mr Hopper defected from the LNP government to join Katter's Party in November last year.
Mr Hopper said it meant the minor party could punch above its weight in holding the government to account.
"As soon as a health bill is introduced, we'll send it through to our shadow minister who is a doctor," Mr Hopper said.
"We have on-the-ground grassroots people having an input into parliament.
"It's a great training ground.
"They will stand for seats at the next state election."
KAP is yet to say where each of the new ministers-in-exile come from, although some are familiar faces.
KAP deputy energy spokesman Rob Earixson hails from Chinchilla, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander & multicultural affairs spokesman Les Muckan comes from the Hervey Bay region as does deputy housing spokesman Gordon Dale.
Environment spokesman Luke Hargreaves ran for the Central Queensland seat of Keppel at the 2012 election.
Mr Hopper said the Katter Cabinet would begin work as soon as they were sworn in.
The swearing in would be "Me addressing them and telling them what to do," Mr Hopper said.
The full list of the Katter Party's "shadow ministry", naming the spokespeople and their deputies for each portfolio.
Leader of the House, Parliamentary Whip
State Development, Infrastructure & Planning
Treasury & Trade
Dr Damien Byrnes
Education, Training & Employment
Police and Community Safety
Attorney General & Justice
Transport & Main Roads
Housing & Public Works
Agriculture, Fisheries & Forestry
Environment & Heritage Protection
Natural Resources and Mines
Energy & Water Supply
Communities, Child Safety & Disability Services
Science, Information Technology And Arts
National Parks, Recreation, Sport and Racing
Tourism, Major Events, Small Business & Commonwealth Games
Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander & Multicultural Affairs
State Union Liaison Officer