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Spirit of Tasmania - Deaths of Polo Ponies

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Tags: Animal Welfare, TT-Line


We have just heard that the DPIPWE investigation is incomplete with no time frame set by the minister. TT-Line is accused of failing to ensure the wellbeing of 16 prized polo ponies that died on the Spirit of Tasmania in January of this year.

Have you requested or received any advice from TT-Line management about this tragedy? If so, could you please share it with the House? Further, can you guarantee Tasmanians who are concerned about animal welfare that the GBE for which you are responsible has undertaken all necessary steps to ensure animals will not die on the Spirit of Tasmania crossings in the future?


Madam speaker, I thank the member for her question. I agree with the member as all Tasmanians would agree that this is a tragic event. The deaths of these ponies is nothing but tragic and I recognise that it will have a significant impact on all Tasmanians. It is the subject of an animal welfare investigation which is ongoing and it is not appropriate to make any comments about these matters at this time.

Ms O'CONNOR - Point of order, Madam Speaker. It is not acceptable for a minister of the Crown who is asked a question about an area that he is responsible for to provide no answer at all. Were you given advice? That is not a sub judice issue.

Madam SPEAKER - On the point of order, you know I cannot instruct the minister to answer the question in any other way than he sees fit.