Victorias health minister provided a number of written responses to questions posed to her about the governments public health response to the CCP virus pandemic that she evaded during Parliamentary Question Time the day before.
Victorias Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos refused to answer most questions for an hour, creating outrage among cross-benchers and upper house ministers.
In response to her first question, Mikakos made it clear she was in attendance against the advice of the Chief Health Officer, Brett Sutton.
“We shouldnt be at Parliament today,” she wrote on Twitter.
“Its a dangerous trend for leaders to ignore medical advice. We should set the example. The longer were here, the greater the risk to all who work at [Spring Street],” she added.
We shouldnt be at parliament today. We should all be staying safe. The @VictorianCHO advice was to delay this sitting. Its a dangerous trend for leaders to ignore medical advice. We should set the example. The longer were here, the greater the risk to all who work at #springst pic.twitter.com/eocRLzM7mW
— Jenny Mikakos MP #StayHomeSaveLives (@JennyMikakos) August 4, 2020
Opposition Health Minister Wants Genomic Report Released
Opposition health minister Georgie Crozier wrote on Twitter on Aug. 5 that she had received written answers to the questions she raised in Parliament the day before, including about the release of a genomics report undertaken by the Doherty Institute into Victorias positive COVID-19 cases.
In one of the written responses shared on Twitter by Crozier, Mikakos writes that a Board of Inquiry was formally established by the Victorian government on July 2 to examine aspects of the hotel quarantine program.
“I will not be providing a commentary while the inquiry is ongoing,” Mikakos writes on two of the written responses.
Crozier challenged this, writing on Twitter that the inquiry did not prevent public commentary. This was backed up by a statement released by former judge Jennifer Coate, who is leading the inquiry.
“Under law, unlike a court, there is no general restriction or prohibition which would prevent a person from commenting publicly or answering questions to which they know the answers on matters which are the subject of examination by this board of inquiry,” Coate said in a statement announcing a delay to the inquiry.
Crozier asked why spending on the public health team (which includes contact tracing) was cut in 2016-17 and 2019-20.
Here are the answers to the questions I raised in the Parliament yesterday. Noting the no commentary because of #HQInquiry .. despite Chairperson Coate saying the inquiry is not a court so doesnt prevent anyone from commenting publicly or answering questions.. #springst pic.twitter.com/hi4e4GP1s4
— Georgie Crozier MP (@georgiecrozier) August 5, 2020