David Coleman MP may lose ministerial role in cabinet reshuffle

Personal leave: Prime Minister Scott Morrison (right) having lunch with MP David Coleman in the Hurstville CBD. Mr Coleman is still on leave. Picture: John Veage

Personal leave: Prime Minister Scott Morrison (right) having lunch with MP David Coleman in the Hurstville CBD. Mr Coleman is still on leave. Picture: John Veage

Prime Minister Scott Morrison will announce changes to his ministry line-up after parliament has risen at the end of the year, which could see Banks MP David Coleman lose his ministerial status.

Mr Coleman is Australia's Immigration Minister and is still on leave for personal reasons.

The PM granted the leave in December 2019 and said at the time he looked forward to Mr Coleman returning to his ministerial role when he was in a position to do so.

The Leader has received emails from constituents questioning the prolonged absence of Mr Coleman from parliamentary duties.

The opposition has granted Mr Coleman a pair, so he is not required to sit in parliament.

He has not received his ministerial allowance since December 2019, when he sought leave.

The Leader asked Mr Coleman several questions all of which he declined to answer directly.

Among the questions we asked Mr Coleman, was why he had taken such an extended leave of absence, and why he won't resign like Mike Kelly (Labor) and give the electorate a chance to elect a member who can adequately represent them.

We understand Mr Coleman's 'personal leave' will continue until December and he will not resign from parliament.

The Leader believes Mr Coleman is still fulfilling local member duties and receiving his parliamentary salary as an MP.

Some within Labor Party ranks are annoyed it has adhered to the parliamentary convention of granting Mr Coleman a pair for so long.

They point to the record number of times during this parliament the government has trashed normal parliamentary behaviour such as stifling debate in the house by not allowing members to be heard and limiting sitting days.

However, others from Labor say they have no problem with the length of time Mr Coleman has been granted a pair during the current sitting of parliament.

When asked, Mr Coleman would not comment on a possible return to his parliamentary and ministerial duties.