Liberal MP Stuart Robert's absence 'unacceptable': PM

·1-min read
Mick Tsikas/AAP PHOTOS

Retiring Liberal MP Stuart Robert's absence from parliament is "completely unacceptable", Prime Minister Anthony Albanese says.

Mr Robert has said he intends to formally resign from his Queensland seat of Fadden in the next few weeks, and skipped Canberra last week for the budget sittings.

Speaking in Tweed Heads ahead of a visit to Fadden, Mr Albanese was scathing of Mr Robert for continuing to receive a taxpayer-funded salary while not attending parliament.

He also took aim at Opposition Leader Peter Dutton, who on Tuesday said it wasn't "unusual at all" for a retiring parliamentarian not to turn up - noting former Labor leaders Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd had done it.

"That is not business as usual ... this is completely unacceptable," Mr Albanese told reporters.

"I find it incomprehensible that Peter Dutton finds this behaviour acceptable - that you can continue to get the pay as a member for Fadden and not think that you have to turn up to work."

Mr Albanese said voters in Fadden "deserve better".

Fadden is considered a safe seat for the LNP and was retained by Mr Robert with a margin of 10.6 per cent at last year's election.

Mr Albanese said Labor was yet to decide if it would contest Fadden, saying expectations about winning the very safe Liberal seat were "realistic".

Mr Robert was first elected to parliament in 2007 and served on the coalition government frontbench since 2013.

Two candidates have nominated for LNP preselection - Gold Coast council planning chief Cameron Caldwell and former Queenslander of the Year Dr Dinesh Palipana.

Party nominations for the seat close on Friday.