Opposition Leader Annastacia Palaszczuk said Campbell Newman must immediately apologise for betraying Queenslanders.
Ms Palaszczuk said today’s announcement by Treasurer Tim Nicholls that electricity poles and wires were now up for sale was a nightmare for Queensland families.
“The Newman Government’s shock announcement that it will engage in the single largest asset sale in Queensland’s history via a long-term lease of all of Queensland’s poles and wires is very concerning,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“It’s another broken promise from Campbell Newman who promised this would never happen.
“Queenslanders have made it clear that they don’t want their income-producing assets sold, especially when those assets have a direct impact on their household budget.
“The Newman Government is not waiting for a mandate to sell these assets and is already spending millions of taxpayer dollars in secret on merchant bankers and international law firms to start selling our assets.
“This is a nightmare for Queensland families.”
Shadow Treasurer Curtis Pitt said the future of regional subsidies for electricity prices was at risk.
“Subsidies for Queenslanders in regional communities total $683 million this financial year,” he said.
“Those subsidies are paid for by the returns from the government-owned electricity network.
“When the network is in the hands of a private provider focussed on maximising profit and minimising expense, subsidies will go.
“Tim Nicholls has now removed any doubt the LNP are selling our electricity assets. Poles, wires, the whole lot.”
Ms Palaszczuk pointed to Campbell Newman’s statements from November 2012 when he said “the poles and wires transmission stuff, I believe should be owned by the people because they are natural monopolies”.
She said when monopoly infrastructure was privatised, it meant fewer services and higher prices.
“It means impacts on our rural producers and small businesses who have already been hit hard by rising electricity prices,” she said.
“His statements that market regulation will protect Queenslanders are baseless considering the Newman Government weakened this legislation just last week.
“Campbell Newman and the LNP have broken another promise to Queenslanders.
“Only Labor will stand up for Queensland and protect our state assets. The LNP are selling your assets. Labor won’t. It’s that simple.”