Pauline Hanson Threatens Legal Action Against Queensland Government If Borders Don't Reopen
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has threatened to launch legal action against the Queensland government if it doesn't open up the state borders soon.
The Sunshine State has been cut off from the rest of Australia for weeks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Several other states and territories adopted the same hardline approach with high rates of success.
However, Ms Hanson thinks the borders should be opened up now that new coronavirus cases have plummeted and has accused the Queensland government of being a 'dictatorship' with its border policy.
She's given Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk until tomorrow (May 28) afternoon to make a decision or she'll launch a High Court action against the state.
The politician says the current border restrictions violate section 92 of the Constitution, which guarantees the right of free movement between states.
She adds that businesses and citizens are suffering from not being able to travel to different states and territories as well as welcome others into their areas.
"We didn't close the borders because of the flu. So we have closed them because of coronavirus," she told The Today Show. "Annastacia Palaszczuk is actually destroying people's lives, their livelihoods and businesses and they can't go on.
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"I hate this dictatorship. I am all for leadership, but this is dictatorship."
In a letter sent to the state government, Ms Hanson said Ms Palaszczuk has until 4pm to make up her mind.
"If you do not give that undertaking, and you do not otherwise satisfy us that the border ban is valid, we expect to receive instructions to commence proceedings in the High Court of Australia seeking a declaration that the border ban is invalid," she said.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has hit back at NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian's criticism over border closures, saying "get your cases under control so we can open up". #9Today pic.twitter.com/DozPyvBR1i
- The Today Show (@TheTodayShow) May 26, 2020
"A legal team, including a leading constitutional QC, is assembled and ready to go. Ordinary Australians affected by the border laws have come forward to stand as plaintiffs. The first plaintiff is a tourism operator from southeast Queensland."
Queensland officials have warned the border closures could remain in place until September, however they would be reviewing it on a month-by-month basis.
Ms Palaszczuk highlighted how High Court decisions usually take a long time and borders would likely be opened up before anything is handed down. She added that interstate trade hasn't been affected during the pandemic.
But the Premier said she won't get in the way of Ms Hanson's legal bid.
"[If] she wants to do that, that's entirely up to her. But by the time any action ... got to the High Court I'm quite sure that borders would be open again," Ms Palaszczuk said.
Featured Image Credit: Channel 9