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Baton passed to Tim Mander
4BC Drive: The State Government has announced that former NRL referee Tim Mander will replace Bruce Flegg as State Housing Minister. Mr Flegg resigned earlier this week after a former staffer declared he was unfit to serve as a Minister.
Mander eager to replace Flegg
Former National Rugby League referee Tim Mander says he isn't surprised by his elevation to the Queensland cabinet after only eight months in politics.
Premier Campbell Newman announced on Thursday Mr Mander would replace Bruce Flegg as the state's housing and public works minister.
Dr Flegg stood down voluntarily on Wednesday amid allegations he misled parliament over the amount of contact he had with his lobbyist son Jonathon, who works for communications and business advisory firm Rowland.
Mr Mander says he has aspired to a cabinet role since winning the Brisbane seat of Everton in March, although he expected the process to take longer.
"I've learned very quickly in my short time in politics that a day is a long time in politics, and I'm just delighted to be able to take up the challenge," the former referee and Scripture Union CEO told reporters.
The reshuffle also sees Mirani MP Ted Malone assume the newly created role of assistant minister for police and community safety.
Former police minister David Gibson was named to chair the Parliamentary Committee for State Development.
The Gympie MP was sacked as police and community safety minister weeks after the election over unpaid speeding fines.
But Mr Newman said the appointment did not necessary herald Mr Gibson's return back to cabinet.
"I can't leave his talents sitting there on the backbench any longer," he told reporters.
"David has paid the price for the things that have been canvassed before."
Mr Gibson said the new role was "an opportunity to serve".
"I've always been willing to serve in the parliament in whichever capacity has been extended to me at whatever the time," he said.
Mr Mander's former role as assistant minister for sport and racing will not be filled.
"We already have enough assistant ministers," Mr Newman said.
Water and Energy Minister Mark McArdle will take responsibility for housing and public works until Mr Mander is sworn in.
I think it's fantastic to see Mr Mander promoted to Housing Minister. The compassion he brings to this portfolio is genuine. I reckon Tim is one bloke who is truly beyond reproach. He was a wonderful chaplain at Grovely SS years ago and his role as Referee Boss was never questioned.Phil of Mitchelton Friday 16 November, 2012 - 3:28 PM