CFMMEU calls for work to stop immediately at embattled North Queensland Stadium
CFMMEU calls for work to stop immediately at embattled North Queensland Stadium

Union calls for stadium work to stop immediately

THE union has called for work on the embattled North Queensland Stadium to be stopped immediately after the state's construction watchdog purportedly found evidence of unlicensed work occurring at the site.

The Construction, Forestry, Mining, Maritime and Energy Union has today called for principal contractor Watpac to halt all work on the already delayed site while the State Government undertakes a "full and independent" investigation into the use of "unlicensed contractors" on major stadium works.

It comes alongside news Watpac's managing director Martin Munro will be replaced.

In a statement yesterday, Watpac announced Ben O'Rourke would take the position of chief executive of the company from June 3.

Mr Munro has been with the company since 2012.

According to the CFMMEU, the Queensland Building and Construction Commission stopped contracted concreter PJ Walsh continuing work after finding the company doing unlicensed work.

CFMMEU state secretary Michael Ravbar said it was "extraordinary" that PJ Walsh was issued the relevant licences it needed within two hours so work could resume, a process that normally takes about three weeks.

Mr Ravbar has called on Public Works Minister Mick de Brenni to "intervene immediately" and order a full and independent investigation and engineering assessment.

"This is not proper process. At its best it is rubber stamping an unlicensed contractor after the event; at its worst it is a cover-up … and one that has occurred without conducting engineering checks of the major structural work the contractor has already performed," Mr Ravbar said.

"The dodgy process and the subsequent cover-up not only warrants urgent investigation, and also raises serious questions as to how many other unlicensed contractors are working on this major state government project."

CFMMEU regional co-ordinator Kane Lowth alleged unlicensed work had been performed on the project "at a grand scale" and raises "serious questions about both the quality of the work and safety of the public".

Minister de Brenni has been contacted for comment.

Watpac has been contacted for comment.

Contractor PJ Walsh has been contacted for comment.

More to come.