Matthew Groom quitting will force Will Hodgman to act on Adam Brooks: Scott Bacon

Minister Matthew Groom’s resignation will force Premier Will Hodgman to sort out ex-minister Adam Brooks’ future, Labor says.

Adam Brooks (right) and Premier Will Hodgman.

Adam Brooks (right) and Premier Will Hodgman.

Mr Brooks has been effectively barred from the ministry since June 2016, pending an audit of an email account.

The audit was ordered by Mr Hodgman after Mr Brooks hit strife in an estimates hearing when he gave incorrect answers about the email account, which related to his mining business.

The audit is still to be completed.

“The resignation of Matthew Groom will force the Premier’s hand when it comes to the Adam Brooks email audit,” Shadow Treasurer Scott Bacon said.

“Labor understands there is nothing preventing the crown solicitor auditing the mining business email account Mr Brooks used while he was the minister.

“It’s been more than 15 months since the Premier promised the audit would be completed in a matter of weeks.

“Will Hodgman needs to bring this saga to an end.

“The Premier has made it clear that Mr Brooks cannot return to cabinet unless an audit is completed.

“As it stands, Adam Brooks will go to the election in limbo.

“The people of Braddon deserve to know what they’re voting for.”

In the 2016 hearing, Mr Brooks denied to Mr Bacon that he was still using the email account.

He corrected himself and admitted he was still using it.

He resigned as resources minister later that month.

Mr Hodgman said Mr Brooks’ answers “contributed to the perception of a conflict of interest”.

Mr Brooks has said there was no actual conflict.

The audit was delayed due to matters relating to Mr Brooks’ divorce.

On Monday, Mr Brooks said: "The people of Braddon can clearly see that I am delivering strongly for them despite not being in cabinet;  for example, on both the seal dumping ban and opening four-wheel drive tracks.”

“In relation to the audit, the fact is I absolutely did nothing wrong and the acting secretary of the department has given all the decisions I took the clean bill of health.

“Having said that, in relation to my divorce, there are still matters to be resolved regarding the settlement and a confidentiality clause means I cannot comment further, other than to say I absolutely remain committed to the audit.”

This story Spotlight on Brooks future first appeared on The Advocate.