Calls for banished MP to return to SA Libs

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The scrapping of a South Australian inquiry into an alleged bottom-slapping incident could lead to an MP being brought back into the Liberal fold.

Sam Duluk, who's now sitting as an independent, was acquitted of assault at a parliament house Christmas party, and now a parliamentary probe has been canned.

Senior federal Liberal Nicolle Flint, the state's Liberal Women's Council president, is calling for Mr Duluk to be readmitted to the party because he has "extensive support" from local party members.

The accusation stemmed from his conduct towards SA-BEST upper house MP Connie Bonaros in December 2019.

"I was not the only one who Mr Duluk harassed that night," Ms Bonaros alleged on Wednesday.

"I am disappointed that an inquiry in my worksite will not continue.

"It's time the perpetrators were made accountable."

Mr Duluk, the MP for Waite, had pleaded not guilty to a related charge at a court hearing earlier this year.

He was later acquitted when a magistrate found that while he may have behaved like a "drunken pest" his conduct was "not illegal".

Mr Duluk was banished from the Liberal party room over his alleged behaviour and suspended his wider party membership, but continued to sit in the SA parliament's House of Assembly as an independent.

"Sam has worked very hard to address the issues that led to the events of 2019 and has demonstrated his absolute commitment to serving the people of Waite since," Ms Flint told The Advertiser on Wednesday.

The parliamentary inquiry launched into his conduct was put on hold while police investigations and a subsequent court case were underway.

"Are we ever going to find out exactly what happened on that evening, or are we going to see Steve Marshall sweep everything under the carpet?," SA Labor deputy leader Susan Close said to reporters.

Previously the premier declared the inquiry would help decide whether the exiled Liberal could rejoin the party.

"That will be a matter for the state executive of the Liberal Party to decide, if an application is made," Mr Marshall has told parliament.

Mr Duluk welcomed the Speaker's ruling on Tuesday that the suspended parliamentary inquiry would not resume, and again expressed his "personal apology and remorse" for his behaviour some 20 months ago.

"I know that daily, I have taken positive steps to reflect and improve as a person," he said.

"I seek to continue to serve the people of Waite to the best of my ability."

His seat could be crucial for a return of the Liberal government at the next state election, in March 2022.

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