I read recently in The Courier a claim that our local Member would “hold the government to account” on electoral boundary redistribution.

This is yet another empty claim from Roy Butler, who doesn’t seem to understand that the government has absolutely nothing to do with the process.

Boundary redistributions are solely a matter for the NSW Electoral Commission which is an independent body that sorts out electoral boundaries, and it is kept at arm’s length from government – as it should be.

To suggest the government can and does interfere in any way with boundaries, as Mr Butler does, simply undermines our democracy.

Just to explain what actually does happen, electoral boundaries are redrawn after every second election.

Everyone, from the Premier to the individual voter has the right to have their say on the process.

This is a fundamental part of ensuring our democracy is free and fair. Having looked at the commission’s website, Mr Butler seems to have missed his chance.

His party’s submission was just four pages in length, while other submissions ran over hundreds of pages with extensive detail.

Rather than seek to sow mistrust in our democracy, Mr Butler should instead ask his own party why they could only be bothered to produce the most basic and brief of submissions on an issue that the National Party has for many years requested the Boundaries Commission to remedy.

This is testament that government cannot influence the outcome.

Mr Butler would do better to explain what actually happens so that people are aware and understand the process that affects everyone of us.

Jocellin Jansson, Narrabri

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