One Nation under fresh scrutiny over possible electoral breaches

Pauline Hanson poses in front of the One Nation plane during her “Fed Up” tour. Photo: Onenation苏州夜总会招聘.auLabor has referred Pauline Hanson’s One Nation to Queensland authorities amid claims the party has breached electoral rules.
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ALP senator Murray Watt has asked the Queensland Electoral Commission to investigate a report that One Nation secretly switched legal structures last year and now risks being deregistered as a party.

The report inThe Saturday Paperclaimed One Nation’s operating structure was changed in November last year from that of an unincorporated association to an incorporated association. The report said the change was made to shift legal liability away from senior party officers.

The report goes on to allege Senator Hanson, the party’s registered officer, failed to notify the QEC or One Nation members as required under electoral laws. It also says that under this new structure the party’s constitution does not comply with the requirements of a registered political party.

Labor senator Murray Watt has referred One Nation to the Queensland Electoral Commission. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Senator Watt says the episode was consistent with One Nation’s bid to centralise power to a small number of party officers in Queensland.

In a letter to Queensland Electoral Commissioner Walter van der Merwe, Senator Watt says if the allegations are true they may amount to grounds for the cancellation of the party’s registration in Queensland.

“If these series of allegations are correct they suggest a pattern of behaviour by Senator Hanson and PHON’s senior officials and a belief that they do not need to comply with n laws, in a manner expected of all other political parties,” Senator Watt said in his letter.

“I ask you to investigate these serious allegations concerning PHON’s registration, and take any required action to ensure compliance with the Electoral Act.”

A spokesman for Ms Hanson said: “At this time the party is making no comment.”

This is the third matter recently referred to authorities.

It has been previously alleged that the party has been collecting GST without proper n Tax Office approval. There are also claims the party failed to properly declare the donation of a light plane used by Ms Hanson.

In an episode of the ABC’sFour Cornerslast month former One Nation treasurer Ian Nelson claimed he urged Senator Hanson and her high-profile chief of staff James Ashby to disclose the donation but was overruled.

Mr Nelson, who has since fallen out with Senator Hanson, alleged Melbourne property developer Bill McNee transferred funds to buy the plane to Mr Ashby and that it was insured in his name. Ms Hanson used the Jabiru plane – decorated with party logos – to campaign for last year’s election.

However Mr Ashby says his company bought the plane and he was happy for the AEC to investigate the matter.

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