Regional Victoria must be allowed to hang out the ‘open’ sign now before it is beyond recovery.
The Nationals leader and Member for Murray Plains Peter Walsh said the urgent need is now “as beyond discussion as it is beyond a joke”.
Mr Walsh said northern Victoria has been shackled to the shambles of the Andrews Labor Government’s mismanagement of COVID-19 controls for too long.
He said if “Premier Daniel Andrews does not act immediately to put northern Victorian and Murray River towns on a par with NSW restrictions – at a bare minimum – he will personally be responsible for every business that closes, every job that is lost and every family’s life that is ruined”.
“The reward for our region taking the COVID-19 threat seriously from the start, and from stopping it dead in its tracks, is to be thrown under a bus in Melbourne, because the Andrews Labor Government cannot see past its city-centric bigotry,” Mr Walsh added.
“We have been dragged into a mess beyond our control – and it’s a mess you will only find in Victoria,” he said.
“The rest of Australia has managed to get this right but not the Andrews Labor Government – Daniel Andrews has dismissed every move made by other states, he has gone so far as to insult some of them with derisive comments – and told us he would lead his people to the promised land.
“On June 20 Mr Andrews blamed families for the flare up of a potential second wave in Melbourne.
“On June 23 he rejected the help of the Australian Defence Forces.
“On June 28 he went on TV and radio and blamed selfish, thoughtless young people for the soaring numbers.
“On June 30 he turned on the hotel quarantine program as being responsible for the worsening crisis.
“There is only one constant through all of this charade – Dictator Dan. He has fronted cameras for weeks insisting it was his way or the wrong way and in that, at least, he was right – he could not have got it more wrong and now the people of northern Victoria are paying the price of his hubris.”