6th October 2005
300 rural and regional landholders from across Queensland marched with Property Rights Australia to converge on the regional sitting of parliament in Rockhampton this week.
Armed with nothing more than placards, strong vocals and a belief in a strong cause the march took centre stage in the streets of Rockhampton. Prosting against the undemocratic and constitutionally invalid Vegetation Managment Act and the disgraceful new state government water charges, landholders carried through with their second such protest this year.
Arriving on the steps of the Rockhampton parliamnet, PRA chairman John Purcell called for the Premier and Natural Resources Minister Henry Palaszczuk to step out and reply to their concerns.
But there came no response.
Mr Purcell said he expected more of the Premier.
‘ We are, after all, supposedly part of Queensland’ he said.
‘We had 500 people march in Brsibane and he didn’t have the guts to stand up to us there. If he doesn’t want to talk to us, thats fine, but it is not going to deter us.’
‘We have justice on our side.’
Mr Purcell and thousands of other rural and regional landholders at at least hoping that juctice on their side, as they campaign against the Vegetation Managment Act (VMA) to the High Court.
‘We’re there, we have money, and we’re going to act, because we belive that if we are not going to get justice in the Queensland legal system, then we will get it in the High Court.’
With the absent seats at the protest awaiting Mr Beattie and Mr Palaszczuk, Opposition leader Laurence Springborg took the opportunity to address the crowd.
‘This whole issue should be based on science’ Mr Springborg said.
‘If you make a decision to take away someone’s rights, it should be demonstrable’
‘It is about your rights and how they have been extinguished without any reasonable argument and without any reasonable science’
Property Rights Australia reaffirmed to take the fight to the government for the sake of all landholders in Queensland and for the sake of environmental sustainability.
By Brad Pfeffer