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3.11 The Opposition

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The political party, or coalition of parties that are in the minority in the Legislative Assembly, is known as the Opposition. The person elected as the leader of that party or parties is known as the Leader of the Opposition.

The opposition plays an important role in the Westminster system by scrutinising and publicly commenting on the activities of the Executive. As part of this role, the Opposition often proposes amendments to government legislation and in some cases votes against it. The Opposition also offers that electorate an alternative government by formulating policies and by developing links with interest groups seeking political support.

At general election, the Opposition will seek to gain a majority of seats in the Legislative Assembly so that it can be invited by the Governor to form a government. If that happens the Leader of the Opposition would normally become the Premier.