Senator Malcolm Roberts will host a property rights forum in Nanango on Saturday, October 10, 2020.
Senator Malcolm Roberts will host a property rights forum in Nanango on Saturday, October 10, 2020.

One Nation senator to host property rights forum in Nanango

ONE Nation senator Malcolm Roberts will this weekend host a forum in the South Burnett on government impacts on property rights - a situation he calls a “travesty”.

The Queensland Senator will also be joined by Charleville grazier Dan McDonald, who was convicted in 2017 of six counts of carrying out assessable development without a permit by using mulga on his land to feed his cattle during the recent drought, and fined $112,000.

The forum on Saturday will cover claims that governments have stolen without compensation landowners’ rights to use the land and solutions to fix the problem.

“People are stunned to find that government can overreach into people’s freehold land and resources and control what landowners can and cannot do,” Senator Roberts said.

“Key federal and state politicians from both sides of politics using the slow, deceitful creep of bureaucratic control have breached our federal constitution to avoid paying compensation and I will continue to work for restoration or compensation until farmers are treated justly.”

Dan McDonald said rights of landowners had been removed during the past two decades.

“Fundamental principles of property law enshrined in legislation vests absolute ownership and right of use to the title holder, and as the freehold owner of my property I own the vegetation on my property and the right to use it,” Mr McDonald said.

“However over the past 20 years with ongoing amendments to the Queensland Vegetation Management Act, farmers no longer have the right to use their vegetation and land.

“But our right to compensation or the restoration has been bypassed in a blatant conflict of law that the government refuses to address.”

Senator Roberts said the 2016 Federal Productivity Commission report states that land clearing restrictions failed to balance economic gain with environmental concerns.

“Property rights are central to successful farming and short-sighted land clearing restrictions are reducing our capacity to grow food and fibre,” he said.

“The owner of the land pays the highest price for abuse of the land. We must recognise that farmers are not criminals but are the best custodians of the land and natural environmentalists.”

Senator Roberts said Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington have both been invited to address the forum to share their parties’ positions on the subject.

While the Premier had yet to respond, the Opposition Leader has committed to sending a statement to be read aloud in her absence.

The Property Rights Forum will be held at the Nanango Cultural Centre on George Street, from 5.00 - 6.30pm. RSVP senator.roberts@aph.gov.au.

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