Australian MP Dorothy Pratt has caused controversy in the state parliament after she attacked plans to allow gay adoption, saying homosexuality was not a normal part of life.

Pratt, an independent in the parliament and MP for the Nanango district of Queensland, said same-sex couples should not be given the right to adopt children, reports the Courier Mail.

“I must say I was very pleased there was no allowance in this bill for homosexual couples to adopt a child,” she said.

Pratt added: “I feel very strongly about that particular thought that . . . I’m not saying they aren’t loving people, I’m not saying they wouldn’t be fabulous parents, but I am saying that in my opinion a child deserves a mother and a father if possible and that whether you regard homosexual activity as a normal part of life or not, I don’t.

“And as far as I’m concerned, nature intended that a male and a female came together to reproduce and bear a child, and influence it in all aspects of the male world and the female world and gives it a balanced view.”

The comments came after the Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd vowed to uphold the country’s anti gay marriage laws at the Labor Party’s conference last week.

Other MPs at the Queensland parliament spoke out against Pratt’s comments. Christine Smith, MP for Burleigh, spoke at the debate, voicing her support for same-sex adoption.

“I acknowledge people have very strong and opposing views on the sensitive issue of same sex adoption,” she said.

She added: “I believe that same sex couples should be assessed by the same standards as any other couple on their suitability to adopt.”

Peta Kaye-Croft, MP for Broadwater, said she found Pratt’s comments “highly offensive”.