The Australian Greens today condemned Premier Newman's plans to water down Queensland's Crime and Misconduct Commission (CMC) and abolish the requirement for bipartisan appointments as a return to the Joh days.
"Yesterday as NSW's ICAC claimed another scalp and the Victorian Government moved to strengthen their anti-corruption body, Queensland's Premier was taking us backwards with his proposals to weaken the CMC and introduce partisan appointments," Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens spokesperson for Queensland, said.
"With partisan appointments, the CMC will be a lapdog, not a watchdog.
"Just as calls for a federal ICAC are gaining traction, Campbell Newman and the LNP in Queensland are seeking to reduce the CMC's independence - it's here we Joh again to the bad old days.
"Tony Fitzgerald QC has warned that these laws could take Queensland back to the pre-Fitzgerald inquiry days.
"The only thing worse than a watchdog with no teeth, is the CMC with its sweeping powers and critical anti-corruption role becoming simply a tool of the government.
"Everywhere we look, there are conflicts of interest between decision makers and major coal and resource projects.
"Newman himself benefited from a $90,000 donation to his election campaign from Belgian mining company Sibelco who had their mining leases on Stradbroke Island extended, and the Premier has recently announced he will lift the cap on corporate donations.
"The power and influence of mining companies and big business in Queensland is worsening the stench around the anti-democratic reforms the LNP government is introducing to entrench their own power," Senator Waters said.