Katter returns serve over Lister vegetation claim

Robbie Katter has returned serve after Southern Downs Member James Lister blamed KAP, One Nation and Labor for "devastating" vegetation laws.
Robbie Katter has returned serve after Southern Downs Member James Lister blamed KAP, One Nation and Labor for "devastating" vegetation laws.

Katters Australia Party has hit back at Southern Downs Member James :Lisre over his claim that KAP and OneNation were to blame for new vegetation laws.

Speaking to the Argus he said:

“Whilst it is important to achieve a balance to protect both our native vegetation and the rights of farmers, there was no need to change the law - it was fair the way it was,” he said.

But it’s not just Labor who is to blame.

“I am angry that One Nation and Katter preferences put this Labor Government into power. It Labor wasn’t in power, these terrible laws wouldn’t have happened.”

Which drew a swift respone from the KAP the next day.

“It’s very disappointing that James has tried to draw attention away from the real enemy on vegetation management laws, which is the Labor Government,” Robbie Katter said.

“There’s obviously been a directive from LNP leadership to go after minor parties because we’ve seen a number of regional LNP MPs blame KAP for the laws by saying our preferences got Labor into power.

“The claim that our preferences put Labor in Government is nothing more than deception from the LNP. The facts are these - KAP ran split How to Vote cards for every candidate, one side putting LNP above Labor and the other side putting Labor above the LNP. We encourage people to make their own mind up when it comes to preferences.

“The architect of the vegetation management laws was Jackie Trad and the only reason she is in Parliament today is because she received LNP preferences. If she had not she would’ve lost. All this is verifiable on the Electoral Commission Queensland’s website and I’d encourage people to have a look and make up their own minds.

READ MORE: Some history

“I understand James is new to parliament and probably isn’t aware of what his party has done in the past when it comes vegetation management. It was the Federal Coalition who really kicked off the restrictions on clearing.

“In 2003 the Environment Minister in the Howard Government, Hon. Dr David Kemp, gloated about imposing a moratorium on all new clearing applications and permits in Queensland.

“The LNP also had the opportunity to throw Labor out of Government at last year’s budget. The KAP members, as well as other cross benchers, voted against the budget. If the LNP had also voted against it Labor would have had no choice but to go to an election. Instead the LNP supported it, ensuring Labor was able to control when the election was called.”