In what is regarded as an abuse of power, the McGowan Government introduced a bill into parliament on Monday seeking to extend the pandemic ‘emergency powers’ for Western Australia.
While the duration of the extended powers will be subject to revision, this fourth extension is forecast to last until January 2023, rather than the previous expiration date of 4 July 2022.
In mid-April this year the McGowan government announced that the state reached the peak of the Omicron outbreak, however, he now says the state of emergency would continue to be rolled over every two weeks, at the stroke of Emergency Services Minister Stephen Dawson’s pen.
On Tuesday, WA Health reported a new daily record of 12,390 COVID cases. There were 286 positive hospital cases, with eight in the intensive care unit. The total active cases for the state were reported at 61,775. The state has reported 6 deaths since April 11, 2 women and one man in their eighties, a man in his seventies, and two women in their sixties. There were 19,821 PCR tests administered. These figures are alarming considering WA’s high ‘vaccination rates.’
According to the Health.gov.au site and the WA Vaccination dashboard, 95 percent of the population are double vaccinated. The state is recorded as having the highest booster uptake at 83 percent, and almost 21,000 have had their fourth ‘winter’ booster.”
Since the beginning of the ‘pandemic’ Western Australia has been in a state of emergency since March 2020.
In seeking to extend the powers McGowan said, “We’ve delayed bringing them in because we didn’t want to do it if we didn’t need to do it, but we’ve had advice from the Police Commissioner and the Chief Health Officer that it’s required.
“So, in order to protect the health, welfare, and economy of WA, we’re bringing in these laws.”
“These laws are the same ones that have been in place every six months over the course of the last two years,” McGowan said.
In response, Opposition Leader Mia Davies slammed the McGowan government on Tuesday calling the move ‘arrogant,’ saying it has the majority numbers to ‘ram’ the legislation through.
Davies, who said her office was briefed at 11:30 am on Monday with parliament due to sit at 2 pm, added, “In no world does this give any Opposition, whether or not we’ve got five members or twenty-five, the opportunity to do our job properly on behalf of the West Australian public.”
“We have little opportunity, one: to scrutinize the legislation,” she added.
“Very arrogant, and we do question whether or not it is absolutely necessary to see these powers being extended and whether there are other ways that the Government can ensure the community remains safe without remaining under a State of Emergency.”
“Just smacks of a government that is so arrogant with its numbers… you can imagine how frustrating it is for us who want to do the right thing by the people of Western Australia when we’re treated, and the Parliament, is treated this way by the Premier,” Davies said.