Business of the House - Adjournment - CFA
Thursday 11th May 2017 -
Mr WALSH (Murray Plains) — You can tell how poorly a government is performing when they do not want the house to sit. They are hiding. They just do not want to come in here. They do not want the scrutiny of Parliament. You can tell that as the Labor members walk into this house on a sitting day. Their heads are down, their feet are dragging, they just hate coming in here and being held to scrutiny. You can watch the back bench over there when questions are asked about the member for Melton and the member for Tarneit and their rorting and their stealing from the taxpayers of Victoria. Their heads hang low because they know it is true. They know that what we are saying is true: that the members for Melton and Tarneit should not be in this place. They should pay the money back, they should resign and they should go home in disgrace for what they have done to this house and to the reputation of this house.
The government does not want the house to sit — that is very, very obvious — and this motion is about the fact that they actually want to hide. They want to hide from questions about the Country Fire Authority (CFA). They do not want to be held to scrutiny for what they are doing to the volunteers in Victoria — 60 000 volunteers, who are being done over by the Andrews government. The Andrews government has absolutely no respect for the volunteers here in Victoria. Those volunteers were the heroes of Black Saturday, they were the heroes of Ash Wednesday, and what is the Andrews government doing to those volunteers? They are just trashing them and throwing them out just to appease Peter Marshall. As has been asked many, many times: what has Peter Marshall got over the Premier that he would sell out those volunteers just to pay back Peter Marshall?
When you think about what is going on in this house at the moment, I am sure the manager of government business will want to gag the debate on the privacy and data protection commissioner. The manager of government business will make sure that debate is gagged, because they do not want to be held to account for actually sacking an independent officer of the system here in Victoria. They do not want scrutiny. Anyone that criticises the government — they are out the door. Out the door, on the road, hit the frog and toad — you are criticising us; you are out. There is something that I think this government is now proving, and particularly this Premier is proving. He gave a commitment to the people of Victoria that he would govern for all Victorians. A lot of people in country Victoria are now saying he is the Premier for Melbourne. He is not the Premier for Victoria; he is actually the Premier for Melbourne.
Honourable members interjecting.
The SPEAKER — Order! Government members will come to order. The Leader of The Nationals without assistance.
Mr WALSH — That got the ducks off the pond. Just as well there is no duck shooting in here, is it not, because there would be a few feathers flying at the moment. He is the Premier for Melbourne. There is nothing happening in regional Victoria. The Premier is short‑sighted. He cannot see past Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong. That is why people are saying he is the Premier for Melbourne, not the Premier for Victoria.
The Premier said there was going to be an education state. There is $87 million cut out of the education capital budget by this government. They do not care about regional schools at all. There is $32 million cut out of the agriculture budget. They do not care about agriculture in this state. So this motion is about whether we have a government here that wants Parliament to sit, that wants the opportunity to actually be held to account for governing this state for all Victorians, or whether they want to shut down debate, close down the Parliament, not have question time, not be accountable about the rorting members for Melbourne and Tarneit and not be accountable for what they are doing to the CFA volunteers. They want their backbench to stay home and not have to drag their miserable, lousy feet in here to be held to account.
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