Integrity chief has 'target' on back: LNP

·2-min read

Queensland's integrity commissioner has a "target on her back" because she's raised concerns about illegal lobbying involving the Palaszczuk government, the Liberal National Party says.

Integrity Commissioner Nikola Stepanov, who maintains Queensland's register of lobbyists, has reportedly raised concerns that the Public Service Commission has been interfering with her office.

The PSC has cut Integrity Commission staff, confiscated their mobile phones and laptops, deleted records from those devices and altered security permissions and access to the commission's offices, according to a News Corp report.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk faced a barrage of questions in parliament on Wednesday but said she couldn't discuss the matter.

She said some of the report was "speculation" but said parts had been referred to the Crime and Corruption Commission and that meant she could not comment.

Opposition MP Jarrod Bleijie later told reporters the premier had a "ruler mentality that she can do no wrong".

"If it is the case, which I believe it is, that the integrity commissioner has a target on her back because she has been talking about Labor lobbyists and concerns about lobbying activity to this Labor government, then someone, even the CCC should get to the bottom of this," he said.

He also said MPs, local government officials and senior public servants who'd given personal information to the commissioner in the course of seeking her advice needed to know it was "not in the hands of Labor Party strategists".

Earlier, the premier said she was happy to guarantee that such information would not be passed to her staff.

Two months ago, Dr Stepanov said she was "very concerned" about illegal lobbying after a surge in recorded contacts between the state Labor government and lobbyists.

She also said complaints about lobbying and requests for advice about lobbying were rising.

There were 38 requests for advice and 988 contacts recorded between lobbyists and government ministers, MPs, public servants, councillors or local government staff in 2020/21, she said.

That compares with an average of 239 contacts per year between January 2013 and June 2020.

She said there were 46 discrepancies in the records held by chief executives of state government departments and the lobbyists.

There were another 57 discrepancies between the records held by chief executives of local governments and the lobbyists register.

Almost all related to lobbyists failing to record contacts with people on the government register, Dr Stepanov said.

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