The Assistant Attorney General has lashed Premier Daniel Andrews’ “unprecedented” pandemic powers, declaring that the proposed new bill would allow the government to “deprive people of liberty” at will.
The Andrews Government’s Pandemic Management Bill would give the Premier the power to declare a pandemic and extend it in three-month blocks, while bestowing upon the Health Minister unparalleled scope to enforce controversial public health orders.
Queensland Senator and Assistant Attorney General Amanda Stoker said the Premier had “doubled down on draconian powers” after nearly two years of widespread lockdowns and COVID-19 restrictions.
“You’d hope that governments would be stepping back and saying, ‘how can we learn from this so that in similar situations we don’t unnecessarily confine the ability of individuals to live their lives’,” Ms Stoker told Sky News Australia’s Catherine McGregor.
“Instead in Victoria, the Andrews Government has doubled down on draconian pandemic powers and has put forward a bill that has gone through their lower house.
“It would give that government the power to confine the liberties of any individual or any group based on any attribute.”