Mr MILLAR (Gregory—LNP) (3.16 PM):  I would like to contribute to this committee report because the estimates process, and what we do in question time, is important to all Queenslanders.


This House is the House of Queenslanders. It is not the House of the Labor Party, it is not the House of the LNP, it is not the House of any political ideology, it is the House of the people of Queensland. They expect this process to work fairly for everybody.

I am on the Transport and Resources Committee and the chair runs a good process. We seem to find time for proper questioning from the opposition members and from the Labor Party members. It is a fair process. I see other estimates processes where the opposition members are always blocked or there is some reason why they have to interrupt the question and not allow a free-flowing opportunity for the opposition to question the government of the day.


Yes, we are in opposition, we accept that, but our role is to keep the government accountable. A part of that process is to use the estimates hearings in a proper way. The people of Queensland expect that.


We all come into this role to represent our community. A part of that role is to allow questioning of the government of the day about whether they are spending the budget properly and are they meeting the KPIs that they committed to—in other words, are they running the state right. I understand those on the other side in government would say, ‘Yes, we are doing everything right. We should not be questioned.’ Yes, you should be questioned.


Mr Power (Logan-ALP): You had hours and hours of questions.


Mr MILLAR: I take the interjection. The member for Logan is the key person who stops questions. He uses his political ability, which is fantastic for the Labor side. It is brilliant. He runs a very good operation for his government. I am sure the Premier, the Deputy Premier and everybody over that side are patting him on the back after estimates time and saying, ‘What a good job you have done. You have stopped us being questioned. You have stopped scrutiny of us and you have allowed the process to roll out and not be scrutinised properly.’


People in my seat of Gregory expect that no matter what colour of government you are you should be questioned on whether you are spending the money the right way and are you running this government the right way.


Mr Power: We do!


Mr MILLAR: There is no, ‘We need to be questioned. We need to be under some sort of KPI. Are we doing the right thing?’ We should not be restricting the opposition, the crossbenches or even their mates, the Greens.


When the Leader of the Opposition said the system is broken he was right. Are we a better society, a better parliament, when the system is broken? I think we need to fix this system.


I think we need to give those people on the opposition benches the opportunity to question the government of the day. I am not saying that government members should not believe in their ideology or their policies, but they have to at least be questioned on them. They have to at least allow scrutiny on the way they are governing this state and should not be afraid of it.


They should not walk into an estimates process with a game plan on how to stop the opposition questioning the government of the day. If they believe in their policies so much, and if they believe in the way of the Labor Party, they should say, ‘Righto, the books are open. Question me on everything!’


Mr Power: We do.


Mr MILLAR: No, you do not. I take that interjection from the member for Logan.


Mr Power interjected.


Madam DEPUTY SPEAKER (Ms Lui): Member for Logan, order.


Mr MILLAR: I will take his interjection, Madam Deputy Chair, because he does not understand transparency, accountability and openness.


I have no problem—well, I do have a problem—with members opposite espousing their ideologies on the way that they govern Queensland. That is their choice.


However, they must allow the opposition and the crossbenchers to question what they are doing. If they are doing everything right and if they are doing everything perfectly then the books will be open and they can say, ‘Question us.’ However, do not try to shut down an estimates process.


We need to fix this. The system is broken. Fix it now!