Knuth says Premier is ‘punishing’ regional Queensland

THE member for Hill has accused Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk of "punishing" the people of regional and rural Queensland by withdrawing funding for five Katter's Australian Party workers in the wake of Fraser Anning's maiden speech.

Shane Kunth said in the last parliament Queensland Labor agreed to provide resource staff to ensure a diversity within the parliament.

"And through legislation has discriminated against smaller parties," he said.

"The Premier is running on a dangerous line here, she is punishing rural Queensland and she is removing democracy and free speech out of the parliament.

"She is blackmailing us to the point 'if you don't agree with us we will take away you resources'," he said.

Ms Palaszczuk said she would "denounce" the KAP for sticking by the Queensland senator following his maiden speech in federal Parliament last month where he talked about the "final solution".

 

Member for Hill Shane Knuth. PICTURE: BRENDAN RADKE.
Member for Hill Shane Knuth. PICTURE: BRENDAN RADKE.

 

The speech prompted outrage with many suggesting the phrase used by Mr Anning was most commonly associated with the Nazi mission to wipe out Jews.

Mr Knuth in defending Mr Anning said talk of a final solution had been "taken out of context".

"Fraser Anning's speech was manipulated and twisted against the message that he was trying to put out," he said.

"They all patted him on the back for a great speech and someone said he could have been talking of the Nazi Holocaust when he was talking about the final solution.

"He had no mention of the White Australia policy."

The member for Hill said since the stripping of KAP staffers the party office had received a "flood of angry disbelief" from supporters saying "they will never vote for the major parties again".

"We are not going to surrender and (will continue to fight) for proper representation," he said.