The Premier, Will Hodgman, must come clean and disclose whether his Cabinet is split over the internal Forestry Tasmania Review and its accompanying Cabinet Minute, Greens Leader and Forestry spokesperson Kim Booth MP said today.
“It is very telling that when provided the opportunity to do so in Parliament, the Premier failed to rule out a Cabinet split over the Treasurer Gutwein and Minister Harriss co-signed Cabinet Minute and Forestry Tasmania Review,” Mr Booth said.
“Further the Premier also attempted to avoid answering the very simple question whether it took three attempts to get the Forestry Tasmania Review and Cabinet Minute through Cabinet, which finally occurred yesterday.”
“The Greens have it on solid advice that it took at least three attempts to get the co-signed Treasurer Gutwein and Minister Harriss proposal through Cabinet, and Mr Hodgman’s refusal to confirm or deny when asked, only goes to confirm there was, and may still be, a split in Cabinet on this matter.”
“We all know that if it did not take three attempts to get the Gutwein-Harriss proposal through a split Cabinet, the Premier would have delighted in ruling out and denying that assertion. His refusal to answer, is in fact as good as an answer.”
“This clearly raises the serious question over exactly what the Parliament will be provided tomorrow during the expected Ministerial Statement, and how much of the original Review and Cabinet proposal has been altered and revised before Cabinet considered it fit for public consumption.”
“Tasmanians also deserve to know why the Review and Cabinet Minute were blocked the first time, the second time, and what changed to get it through the third time? The public also deserves to know whether it was the Premier’s faction responsible for blocking the Gutwein-Harriss co-signed proposal?”
“Clearly the first two failed attempts to get Cabinet to sign off on the Gutwein-Harriss Cabinet Minute and proposal goes some way to explaining why this review of Forestry Tasmania is so over-due. However the Cabinet split raises further serious questions over any proposed reforms,” Mr Booth said.