House debates

Tuesday, 2 February 2021

Statements by Members


1:51 pm

Photo of Tim WattsTim Watts (Gellibrand, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Communications and Cyber Security) Share this | | Hansard source

Yesterday at the National Press Club, when the Prime Minister was asked about the coalition's one-man COVID-19 misinformation superspreader, the member for Hughes, the Prime Minister declared that the member for Hughes was doing 'a great job'. The member for Hughes took this prime ministerial endorsement of his recent attacks on the Therapeutic Goods Administration as his cue to go on the podcast of Pete Evans. That is the same Pete Evans who was fined earlier this year by the TGA for his marketing of a crank cure for COVID-19, the $15,000 BioCharger NG. Evans claimed that the BioCharger NG was a 'hybrid subtle energy revitalisation platform' and had 'a recipe for COVID-19'. And look! It has these great flashing lights, and there's a metal ring thing and a big red button—

Photo of Llew O'BrienLlew O'Brien (Wide Bay, National Party) Share this | | Hansard source

The member will put the prop down.

Photo of Tim WattsTim Watts (Gellibrand, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Communications and Cyber Security) Share this | | Hansard source

It is laughable, but this is the kind of rubbish that is being promoted on Pete Evans's podcast, which the member for Hughes appeared on. Unfortunately, the BioCharger NG doesn't cure internet brainworms! I'm sure that the member for Hughes would insist that he personally doesn't endorse the BioCharger NG; he has his own quack cures for COVID-19. This would be laughable if we weren't in the middle of a pandemic, but we are in the middle of a pandemic and it's serious.

The rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine is the most important thing happening in this country now—the most important thing for fighting the health crisis and for securing our economic recovery—and it's being undermined by the silence of the Prime Minister about members of his party room. (Time expired)

1:52 pm

Photo of Vince ConnellyVince Connelly (Stirling, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

As we begin 2021, let's consider what we can and must do to adapt to and prosper in the wake of changes wrought by the pandemic. Our ability to navigate challenges and seize opportunities will be guided at least as much by individual attitudes as by government policy. Personally we must be resilient and bold. We must be flexible. We must manage risk but not be ruled by fear.

Our Morrison government response is reflecting these principles. Economic supports have been targeted and time-framed. Our Modern Manufacturing Strategy will build supply-chain resilience whilst targeting growth in priority areas. We must continue to support and encourage small and family businesses. We must continue to lower energy costs, so let's be open to exploring emerging technologies, like safer, small modular reactors for nuclear energy, and hydrogen. These can help firm energy production alongside renewables. We also need workplace rules that are fit for purpose in a changed world. As we recover and grow stronger at home, we must also continue to support the recovery and the sovereignty of our neighbours in the Indo-Pacific.

Whilst we live in different states and territories, whilst we are from different countries and different cultures, let us all combine, let us all collaborate, as we remember that we are all Australians and that we are all one.