Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has officially, though probably unintentionally announced her plan to cover up environmental mismanagement issues contributing to the Fraser Island bushfires catastrophe, according to the National Dingo Preservation and Recovery Program.
NDPRP Vice President Arthur Gorrie said Queenslanders needed a Fizgerald-style inquiry into the corruption and incompetence of elements within the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service and its parent bureaucracy, the Department of Environment and Science.
“I feel sorry for the honest people who work there,” he said, but it is a department characterised by a culture of lies and victimisation of those with dissenting views.
“We do not need the predetermined whitewash inquiry into irrelevant issues announced by the Premier and others in state parliament last week,” he said.
“She told state parliament the reason for her ordering an inquiry into the island bushfires was that “those who love the island want to be assured that everything that could be done to protect it has and is being done.”
Only one problem with that assurance – it isn’t true.
The Department of Environment and Science fiddled while the world’s heritage burned.
The House was told the DES was so successful it had exceeded its area quota for fuel reduction – but that is easy if your burns routinely get out of control.
The Premier also appears to have pre-empted the assurance she indicated would come out of her “independent” inquiry.
But we do not want false assurances from sham reviews, we want the truth.
We have had enough of official misinformation from those who seem to see it as their role to protect the bureaucrats from us, instead of the other way around.
There is a school of thought that the real purpose of inquiries is to pacify the public by making us feel something is being done, even if it isn’t.
The other is that they should be, as Tony Fitzgerald said of his police misconduct inquiry, “an inquiry into the truth.”
The truth Premier, not the “nothing to see here” assurance we heard from you in parliament.
The Premier said her review would be conducted by the Director General Emergency Management, a small state agency which does not generally look into environmental issues, being concerned only with human and property safety, and which operates under a law that does not even include the word environment.
Ministers also seemed to be changing the subject by referring to the wonderful work of fire fighters, but there is no doubt about that.
The question is why were they not brought in when this catastrophe might have been avoided.
National Dingo Preservation and Recovery Program (Inc. A0051763G)