Wednesday, 26 May 2021
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Prime Minister. The current Melbourne COVID outbreak has been linked to a man who caught the virus while in hotel quarantine in South Australia. If the Prime Minister had fulfilled his responsibility for creating a safe national purpose-built quarantine system, wouldn't Australians be safer today?
I think that is an outrageous slur to put on the South Australian government for the way they have acted, as indeed all states and territories have acted consistent with the national cabinet decision of March a year ago, where together the Commonwealth and the states have worked together to put in place a system of quarantine administering state public health orders that has had a 99.99 per cent effectiveness rate.
Mr Albanese interjecting—
The Leader of the Opposition says it is 'going well'. I would ask the Leader of the Opposition to name the one country in the world today—
No. The Leader of the Opposition will resume his seat.
Mr Albanese interjecting—
No, you won't. The Prime Minister can ask the Leader of the Opposition to answer as many questions as he wants, but that is not how question time works. The Prime Minister has the call.
that has a quarantine effectiveness rate greater than 99.99 per cent? There is not one. If I had said to this House more than one year ago that, working together with the states and territories, we were putting in place such a regime which would have achieved that a level of effectiveness then they wouldn't have believed me and they probably would have opposed it, because what we have seen from the Labor Party throughout the pandemic, dragged great kicking and screaming on every occasion—
Mr Giles interjecting—
Mr Robert interjecting—
The Prime Minister will resume his seat! The Prime Minister resume his seat. The members for Scullin and Fadden will leave under standing order 94(a). The Prime Minister has the call.
The members for Scullin and Fadden then left the chamber.
As the government has worked together with the states and territories to fight this virus, all the Labor Party have been interested in doing is fighting us and now they fight amongst themselves. What we will continue to do is have more than 1,000 ADF personnel out supporting this arrangement, half a billion dollars supporting the national resilience facility put in place in the Northern Territory, as recommended by the quarantine systems review conducted for national cabinet.
Even today, I was speaking to the acting Premier in Victoria about working together now on what I think is a very comprehensive proposal that was received from the Victorian government only weeks ago. Unlike those opposite, I'm not going to attack the states;—
Government members interjecting—
The Prime Minister will resume his seat. Members will cease interjecting. The level of interjections is ridiculously high, and you don't need to be terribly experienced to know this is a very bad time to interject. As I said yesterday, when every member on one side is interjecting, I will certainly take action and I will take action against those I notice have behaved poorly in the past or who are behaving poorly today. The Prime Minister has the call.
It seems I woke up the sleepwalkers over there! That's what it seems. We're going to keep working with states and territories to ensure that not only the quarantine systems we put in place in partnership but the contact tracing work that has been done, especially by the states and territories—
Mr Brian Mitchell interjecting—
I commend the Victorian state government for the work that they are doing, even now, to ensure that they are tracking down all of these cases through the systems that have particularly been— (Time expired)