It’s a sad day in Federal politics, as news rolled in this morning that MP for Lyne, Rob Oakeshott, will be quitting politics (UPDATE: and so is MP for New England, Tony Windsor). Here’s why you should care.
Image: Stefan Postles/Stringer/Getty
The news came this morning that Oakeshott would be giving the political game away by not contesting the next election in September in order to to spend more time with his young family.
Believe it or not, the Member for Lyne has actually done a great deal of work involving the NBN in this particular Parliament.
Oakeshott is an Independent member of Parliament — meaning he is neither a member of the the Liberal/National Coalition or the Labor Party — making him key in the hung parliament negotiations back in 2010. Oakeshott along with fellow Independent, MP for New England Tony Windsor, said that the National Broadband Network was one of the key reasons they sided with Julia Gillard and the Labor Party.
Update: MP for New England, Tony Windsor, also made an announcement this morning saying that he also wouldn’t stand for re-election at the upcoming Federal Election in September. Windsor is most notable for his quote about the NBN during the hung Parliament negotiations in 2010: “do it right, do it once, with fibre”.
Oakeshott has also chaired the House Joint Committee on the National Broadband Network during his time in the Parliament. The committee recently delivered its fourth report into the NBN roll-out, with Oakeshott slamming both sides of the House for politicising important national infrastructure deployments. His most recent foreword now reads as a disappointing swan song in the crusade against party politics.