Greens accuse Macfarlane of breaching code of conduct
A GREENS senator has accused Ian Macfarlane of breaching the ministerial code of conduct by accepting the position of chief executive officer at the Queensland Resources Council.
Senator Larissa Waters said the appointment appeared to be in breach of parts of the 2013 Ministerial Standards, which requires an 18-month cooling off period before former ministers take lobbying jobs.
She said: "Ian Macfarlane's... appointment to head of the Queensland Resources Council is a disgrace and shows just how broken our political system is."
Her fellow Senator Lee Rhiannon also chimed in saying: "The revolving door between the political class and the mining and resources sector causes deep cynicism about MPs and democratic institutions.
"There is a perception in parts of the community that the mining and resources sector and mining-friendly governments are one and the same.
"Ministers provide a secure framework, grants and subsidies for the fossil fuel industry and in exchange expect jobs upon retirement.
"The fact Mr Macfarlane can ignore the rules shows why we urgently need legislated ethical standards for ministers, donations reform and a national corruption watchdog."
Mr Macfarlane responded by saying he had not breached the code.
He said the council was not a lobby organisation and did not need to be registered as such.
"It's a representative organisation," he said.
"I'm complying with code, and that's been checked by the prime minister (Malcolm Turnbull)."
Mr Macfarlane said the Greens should be concentrating on the main issues, not playing the man.
The council's website states: "The Queensland Resources Council is a not-for-profit peak industry association representing the commercial developers of Queensland's minerals and energy resources."
The code states under section 2.24 Post-ministerial employment: "Ministers are required to undertake that, for an eighteen month period after ceasing to be a Minister, they will not lobby, advocate or have business meetings with members of the government, parliament, public service or defence force on any matters on which they have had official dealings as Minister in their last eighteen months in office."