Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Leader
The Liberals’ draconian anti-protest laws were last year found to be unlawful and invalid in the highest court in the country. The enormity of legal costs of the corporate driven and politically motivated laws has been revealed at $355,000 - all to be paid for by the Tasmanian taxpayer.
A massive $355,000 was wasted by the Hodgman Government, who drafted laws that contravened the implied right to freedom of political communication in the Australian Constitution.
This is absolute folly – a waste of public funds to defend the indefensible draconian crack down on the democratic right to peaceful protest.
The Hodgman Government is the laughing stock of the country for their nasty, failed law, which led to a landmark High Court decision affirming the right to peaceful protest and the right to stand up to protect the environment. What’s no laughing matter is Tasmanian taxpayers footing the $355,000 bill.
How can the Premier justify a folly that has slugged taxpayers with a massive lawyers' bill? The hundreds of thousands should be channelled into the community, not paying for the defence of unconstitutional, politically-motivated law.
The Liberals tried to silence dissent and stop peaceful protest and their arrogance was exposed on the national stage. Will Hodgman and his colleagues should apologise to Tasmanians for drafting unconstitutional law and for wasting hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars.
They should also rule out another unjustified attack on the democratic rights of all Tasmanians to peacefully protest.