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The last time Parliament sat here, the chamber was wrapped in a tent

A monitor will be installed above the Speaker’s chair so he can watch over the few lawmakers who will attend Parliament in person.

Mr Pitt will also be able to mute people’s microphones remotely.

Those present will be separated from one another by 1.5 metres and giant screens will display a live feed of those dialling in.

Politicians will be allowed to vote electronically or through the use of a proxy.

Sittings will be held inside the Undumbi room, which is located in the Annexe building, and it won’t be the first time it has been used to house Parliament.

“At some stage in the 1970s, they discovered West Indian termites over in the old House that had probably come in through the furniture,” Clerk of the Parliament Neil Laurie said.

“There was a fair bit of structural damage and it had not been properly maintained, it was falling down a bit, so the only way they could get rid of the termites was to fumigate it for quite some time.

‘They wrapped it up in a big tent, it looked like a circus tent or a Kentucky Fried Chicken box, and it was fumigated, then they renovated it.”

Queensland Parliament sat in the Undumbi Room in the Annexe for about four years during the late 1970s.

Queensland Parliament sat in the Undumbi Room in the Annexe for about four years during the late 1970s.

While the original building was being fumigated, politicians and their staff moved across to the Annexe building, an extension that was finished in 1979.

“It was about a three- or four-year period they operated out of here,” Mr Laurie said.

“The [Undumbi Room] was built as a temporary chamber but then when we didn’t have the need for it any more, the room got turned into a multipurpose room.

“It had white chairs, it was very 70s.”

The temporary measures for virtual parliament were made into law earlier this month amid pressure to include more politicians in the parliamentary process during the pandemic.

“We want every available opportunity to address the issues the Queensland community want us to talk about,” manager of opposition business Jarrod Bleijie said.

“We are simply saying that we are not going to stand by and allow the curtailment of debate and the guillotining of debate as we have seen in the last two to three sittings, which is now the form of this government.

“Ministers must be held accountable.”

Parliament is next scheduled to sit on the week of May 19, but Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk was yet to confirm for how many days. She said she wanted “as many MPs as possible” to be involved in the parliamentary process.

“We will be sitting one day this month and my intention is to follow the national parliament and if they sit for a full three days next month, I am more than happy to convene for the three full days,” she said.

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