'Don't sack us': Councillor's plea to Queen's representative

THE Queen's representative is the last person to "save democracy" in Queensland and should refuse to sign a Bill to remove the Ipswich City Council, Paul Tully has declared.

Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe's intends to introduce and pass new legislation on August 21 that would result in the dismissal of 11 councillors.

In a sensational request, Cr Tully wants Queensland Governor Paul de Jersey to refuse to sign the Bill - which would stop it from becoming law.

"He has the constitutional and legal power to refuse to sign the unfair undemocratic and un-Australian legislation," Cr Tully said.

"The Governor stands between democracy and dictatorship.

"Without his signature on the Bill it is of no legal consequence."

 

The Honourable Paul de Jersey with Mrs Kaye de Jersey.
The Honourable Paul de Jersey with Mrs Kaye de Jersey. Contributed

The extraordinary request of Queensland's longest-serving councillor is unlikely to be supported.

No Governor-General has ever refused to give Royal Assent to an Act of Parliament.

"It would be a very rare step," Cr Tully acknowledged.

"He is appointed by the Queen even though it is traditional for the Queen or the Governors of independent states to allow legislation to pass.

"He would know with the minister's admission that innocent people will be damaged by this (dismissal) and that should be sufficient for the Governor to refuse to sign this into law."

The Governor declined to comment.

As Queen Elizabeth II's representative, it is unusual for a Governor to get involved in politics.

In 1975 a constitutional crisis resulted in Prime Minister Gough Whitlam being removed from power by Governor Sir John Kerr - an act now known as The Dismissal.



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