The leader of the Progressive and Independents Alliance, Roy McTaggart, has rejected the assertions from the Wayne Panton led- PACT group that they have a majority to form the next government.
As calculated by Mr McTaggart, the new parliamentary arithmetic shows a hung parliament and not a coalition majority for the PACT.
“This afternoon Mr Panton announced that he has formed a Government with Mr Bush as Speaker. If this is the case, then he will have nine members in Government seats with an opposition that also has nine members. In effect this would be a hung parliament incapable of passing legislation or even, as their first act, being able to elect a Premier.”
Mr MacTaggart outlined that, “Parliamentary convention throughout the Westminster system of government in the Commonwealth, requires that the casting vote given to the Speaker to break a tie be exercised only to preserve the status quo, not to pass legislation or to elect a new Premier.”
According to the leader of the Progressives and Independents Alliance who have nine of the 19 MPs, “Mr. Panton does not therefore have a viable government at this stage.”
He went on to denounce Monday’s announcement by Mr Panton and the PACT group.
“This is merely a ruse and whilst Mr Panton may be able to fool some of the country with this tactic, he will not be able to fool the majority.”
Mr McTaggart said, “The Progressives and our Alliance partners remain committed to working with elected members to form a Government that can manage the affairs of state and one that can stay together through the difficult time ahead.”
He also said he will make a further announcement “as soon as there is something further to advise.”