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Cabinet shake up won’t fix North Queensland woes

May 17, 2023

As Labor’s long overdue cabinet reshuffle unfolds, Katter’s Australian Party Deputy Leader and Hinchinbrook MP Nick Dametto holds little faith that the cabinet redesign will have the desired impact on crime, health and housing in the north.

Further details are yet to unfold but indications so far are that Yvette D’Ath and Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman will switch portfolios. The struggling soon to be former Health Minster has been responsible for many a health crisis and even survived a motion of no confidence vote in Parliament in late 2022.

The Youth Justice and Housing Ministers have been stripped of their portfolios and demoted to more ‘junior responsibilities’.

“The Premier has finally addressed the fact that certain Ministers were well out of their depths with managing their portfolios and now the real job begins of trying to mop up Labor’s mess,” Mr Dametto said.

“Queensland Health, particularly in regions such as Hinchinbrook has been suffering this term with no new infrastructure signed off in the past three years.

“The appointment of a new Minister may be what is needed to see the calls of the Hinchinbrook electorate realised through the delivery of a publicly owned CT scanner for the Ingham Hospital.

“The Premier has left this reshuffle a little too late in my opinion.

“No back benchers are expected to join the ministry which then prompts the question: Which current Minister will draw the short straw and be tasked with the Housing and Youth Justice portfolios, two of the portfolios failing to deliver for North Queensland.

“The incoming Housing Minister has an almost impossible task ahead of them but all eyes will be on the person who takes on the Youth Justice portfolio while youth crime continues to be the number one issue Queenslanders are facing.

“A failure to bring recidivist youth offenders sunder control before the next state election will not only have that Minister’s head on the political chopping block but will be ultimately responsible for a change of government.”

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