Independent MP Peter Wellington
Independent MP Peter Wellington Cade Mooney

Wellington slams Bleijie's ‘deception’

PETER Wellington has unleashed a salvo on Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie, describing his attack on him in yesterday's Sunshine Coast Daily as a "load of drivel".

Mr Wellington, the Member for Nicklin, is furious at what he sees as the destruction of the independence of the CMC and the parliamentary oversight committee that monitors its function.

"No longer in Queensland will we have a totally independent corruption watchdog and that is what Mr Bleijie doesn't want anyone to focus on," he said in an attack launched on his Facebook page and the Daily's online platform.

"Yesterday the Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee recommended changes that will effectively destroy the independence of the Crime and Misconduct Commission.

"In my dissenting report to the proposed changes to the Crime and Misconduct Commission I said, 'The bill was a signal to Queenslanders that the Newman Government is prepared to let Queensland return to the bad old days of the Bjelke-Petersen government where corruption and misconduct were able to flourish. Now the Government can totally control everything that comes before the Crime and Misconduct Commission. There is no independence'."

Mr Wellington said yesterday he remained furious that the only power of veto over who heads the CMC would be a committee in which the Government held the numbers.

He said that coupled with its decision to reduce Estimates Committee hearings from two weeks to two days, the Newman Government was removing all checks and balances from the system.

Premier Campbell Newman, Mr Bleijie and Parliamentary Legal Affairs Committee chair Ian Berry (LNP) yesterday all defended the proposed changes as being in line with other states.

Tony Fitzgerald, who headed the 1980s inquiry into corruption in Queensland, earlier yesterday lab-elled Mr Bleijie an "inexperienced arrogant fool".

Mr Bleijie said he was not going to succumb to name-calling.

"I never have, I never have in this role over the last two years."