PM dodging accountability with new national cabinet secrecy laws

The PM continues to do all he can to duck transparency and accountability with new laws that would overturn a recent court decision by shielding all national cabinet deliberations from public scrutiny.

Greens deputy leader and spokesperson on democracy Senator Larissa Waters said:

“The Morrison Government is the most secretive government in history. They eagerly relied on cabinet secrecy to hide information about Covid decisions, the ‘gas-led recovery’, the women’s safety taskforce.

“The Administrative Appeals Tribunal ruled that the National Cabinet was not subject to cabinet secrecy provisions or exempted from freedom of information laws.

“Rather than accept that more transparency was required, the government has introduced the COAG Legislation Amendment Bill to overrule the court’s decision. This government wants to keep its deliberations secret and prevent proper scrutiny of its abysmal vaccination rollout, its shambles of a national quarantine program, and its pandering to fossil fuel donors.

“Australians need to have confidence in the institutions charged with charting our course out of the Covid crisis, for tackling women’s safety and economic security, for discussing climate and energy reforms. All decisions must be subject to proper scrutiny and robust, open debate.

“The PM’s war on transparency and accountability has to end.”

Greens leader Adam Bandt said:

“The Prime Minister is addicted to secrecy. Attempts to shut down decision-makers’ transparency set a worrying precedent.

“The pandemic is the biggest policy challenge that the government has taken on this decade. It should be possible to interrogate the decision-making process that has seen the government introduce unprecedented restrictions on our lives.

“People need to be able to know the justification behind these important restrictions.”

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