Trad sees off threat from rebellious unions

 

JACKIE Trad has emerged unscathed from Labor's State Conference with the CFMEU backing down on its threat to move against her yesterday.

It came as Annastacia Palaszczuk claimed underdog status ahead of next year's State Election and urged the party to present a united front in a rallying call to the rank and file.

Her under siege Deputy Premier is not out of the woods yet with the Government bracing for a likely two week wait for the state's corruption watchdog to reveal whether it will move to investigate her family's Woolloongabba investment property purchase.

Concern is growing about the toll the ongoing saga is taking on both Ms Trad and the Government as it threatens to overshadow Regional Parliament in Townsville next week.

"The next election is just over 12 months away," Ms Palaszczuk told the conference in her keynote address.

"The last two elections have shown us that we're unstoppable when we work together.

"Today I am asking the entire Labor movement, I am asking you to recommit today to our next fight.

"We are in this together. There is so much at stake."

The party swung in behind Ms Trad yesterday, giving her a rousing welcome as she took to the stage to give her first address of the day.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Picture: Mark Cranitch.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Picture: Mark Cranitch.

She was spared humiliation with CFMEU boss Michael Ravbar failing to make good on his threat to amend a Cross River Rail motion to take aim at the Treasurer.

But Mr Ravbar did not go quietly on the issue, telling journalists outside the conference that he could take further action if the Government did not move on his push to force CRR contractors to accept the CFMEU's preferred conditions for workers on the project.

He said his position that Ms Trad should resign remained unchanged.

Negotiations had been under way since last Thursday to stop Mr Ravbar moving against Ms Trad at the weekend.

Jackie Trad with baby Evie Pianta (daughter of Nikki Boyd MP). Picture: Mark Cranitch.
Jackie Trad with baby Evie Pianta (daughter of Nikki Boyd MP). Picture: Mark Cranitch.

Fellow Left faction unions including the powerful United Voice, the AMWU and the ETU last week vowed to vote against any motion threatening the Treasurer's future.

The heads of those unions - Gary Bullock, Rohan Webb and Peter Ong - were spotted locked in talks with Mr Ravbar at the back of the conference room yesterday before he ultimately moved his motion without any fuss.

Mr Bullock and Mr Webb also watched on closely as Mr Ravbar spoke to journalists outside the conference room.

"There have been some conversations over the weekend about CRR because in my view it is getting off the rails and the thing is, there's a lot of concern about jobs, a lot of issues about procurement," the maverick CFMEU boss said.

"The Government have said that they are going to talk to us in the next week or two about what is taking place. Let's see if … they deliver on that.

"I'm not going to say what we are going to next. Let's just see what happens."

 

CFMEU Queensland boss Michael Ravbar. Picture: Mark Cranitch.
CFMEU Queensland boss Michael Ravbar. Picture: Mark Cranitch.


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