The Labor Member for Cook, Cynthia Lui has spent months of her time putting together legislation to enshrine Torres Strait Islander adoption tradition into law while motorists are being killed on the neglected streets of the largest town in her electorate.
Lui, from Yam Island in the Torres Strait, controversially moved her office from Mareeba, out of the electorate to Cairns earlier this year, leaving the lower half of Cook without representation.
She said constituents from the Torres Strait found it hard to contact her in Mareeba, one hour’s drive from Cairns.
She relocated the office to the Commonwealth Centre in Cairns to enable a handful of Torres Strait constituents to meet with her after arriving on subsidised flights from Horn Island.
Ms Lui has dumped the 22,000 residents of Mareeba and Douglas Shires leaving them without state representation.
A spokesman for the largest traditional owner group in the Torres Strait told Cairnsnews the child-rearing practices bill introduced by Ms Lui on Thursday into State Parliament was actually related to an Aboriginal custom and not that of Torres Strait Islanders.
Ms Lui has had an electorate office on Thursday Island in the Torres Strait ever since she was elected.
Meanwhile a female motorcyclist was killed in an accident on congested Byrnes Street in Mareeba on Tuesday when a four wheel drive vehicle drove into the rear of her stationary motorcycle while trying to turn into a service station.
Mareeba has been suffering extreme traffic congestion as thousands of tourist vehicles converged on the arterial main street bottleneck this week, heading north after Covid restrictions were lifted.
The Tablelands’ first set of traffic lights, recently erected at a major intersection in the CBD have caused chaos with local traffic forming long queues during peak hours.
Successive State Governments have refused to construct a heavy vehicle, main street bypass, gazetted for 35 years, to divert hundreds of large trucks driving through the CBD each week while parked cars and converging traffic play Russian roulette with smelly semi-trailers full of Cairns rubbish or others carrying dangerous goods.
A heavy vehicle bypass would have enabled The Main Roads Department to leave the large roundabout intact. The Labor government took the soft option of installing lights for $3.5 million instead of building a more expensive bypass.
Federal Member Bob Katter last week opened an office in Mareeba. He says his staff will help to fill the electoral void left by Ms Lui.
Mr Katter said he was “moving heaven and earth” to get funding for the construction of a heavy vehicle bypass, stipulating the work should go only to local contractors.
Letter to the Editor
I noticed our previously invisible member Billy Gordon has had a change of heart and now says he wants to do something for the people of Mareeba.
That is very noble of him, but wasn’t he elected a year ago? What has he been doing over the last 12 months?
Apart from attracting the attention of national newspapers over his photographic ability, has he done anything positive instead of voting with his beloved Labor Party on almost every motion in Parliament?
Relocating from Cairns to Mareeba will at least give him kudos for being the first Member for Cook in many years to live here. Maybe he just realised there are others in his electorate who don’t live on the Cape.
Seeing he has done very little for the southern end of Cook, do local people think he should pay back his government salary for the last 12 months?
He had a chance to get more state representation for people living outside of bigger cities but no he voted with the ALP to water down rural representation and give three more seats to Brisbane. By continually voting with the ALP he has helped himself to get voted out at the next election after the electoral commission changes the boundaries in the far north redistribution, expected in August.
I have been told that Atherton will be added to Mareeba again and their seat of Dalrymple will be abolished. It is not hard to work out who the Atherton people will vote for.
Mr Gordon might find himself running against their excellent politician Shane Knuth, from whom I have been getting help in dealing with the government.
I doubt Mr Gordon will get much support from Mareeba people either in the new electorate because Mr Knuth has been their defacto member since Mr Gordon was elected.
Keith Courte JP
from Robert J Lee in Brisbane
Billy Gordon, the indigenous and invisible Member for the far northern Queensland seat of Cook, who shot to notoriety for sending SMS messages of his penis to several women, yesterday withdrew the complaint he made against Cairns woman, Christine Gibson.
In October Ms Gibson, 50, was charged with blackmail by police allegedly for demanding Mr Gordon give her $10,000 or she would show the media images of his penis.
Speaking on ABC radio this morning Mr Gordon said he had withdrawn the charges , in part, so he could “stay off the front pages for all the wrong reasons.”
After police charged Ms Gibson two other women came forward claiming they too had been sent lewd SMS messages of Mr Gordon’s appendage.
The solicitor acting for Ms Gibson, Paul Richardson, had asked police for copies of the statements from the two women who came forward, because they formed a part of the “factual matrix” of the case.
Mr Richardson said the requested documents had not been forthcoming and he planned to call for a directions hearing, however police offered no evidence at yesterday’s hearing in Cairns Magistrates Court and the case was dropped.
He said Ms Gibson was overjoyed with the decision. “She has been under significant stress and pressure since being charged.”
In defending claims on radio he is the “invisible member” Mr Gordon said he now planned to do his job as the state member and he hoped to visit his electorate helping constituents as best he could.
Dishonest newspaper column
This letter was sent in reply to slanderous letters sent to Kennedy electorate newspapers by the Liberal Member for Cook, David Kempton. It was also sent to Cairns News. Notably most of them are owned by either News Ltd or Fairfax. Notably they allow Liberal liars like Kempton to make false statements, but won’t print a reply. This is the normal modus operandi of these newspapers at election time especially this election where Rupert Murdoch has unashamedly backed Tony Abbott and the Liberal Party. We cannot blame him for helping to remove the disasterous Labor Party Government, but his editors must be fair and publish both sides of an issue. Particularly letters to the editor which are a reader’s only empowerment over the mass media.-editor
Re your correspondent the Liberal Member for Cook David Kempton.
Cook electorate takes in the northern end of the Atherton Tablelands, a large and suffering agricultural district.
Our State Member is like a phantom, rarely seen or heard of in his own electorate, but has found an urge to warn Mt Isa people against our Federal Member Bob Katter.
It seems Mr Kempton is still off in dreamtime because he forgot to tell your readers about the recent 900 per cent jump in Sunwater charges for irrigation and town water coupled with a 23 per cent hike in power costs, compliments of his party.
Or the State Government forced, dictatorial changes to Tableland Regional Councils planning scheme with highly inaccurate environmental, flood zone and other overlays, placed over freehold land rendering hundreds of rural and town properties almost valueless overnight.
Or his governments refusal to effectively tackle deadly disease-ridden bats which infest our yards, parks and orchards thus posing a great risk to human and animal health.
The only political opposition to these crippling policies we have heard is from Bob Katter, his state member for Dalrymple Shane Knuth and Mt Isa Member Robbie Katter. They are working hard to overturn these and other Brisbane-centric, devastating dictates which have driven local farming and other industries further into the ground since the state election.
In reality, it seems Mr Kempton is more worried about Katters awesome state electoral results and hanging onto his 2.5 percent marginal, retirement package seat of Cook.
Mr Kempton cannot be taken seriously.
From a Kennedy voter