Federal Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch has accused the Gillard Government of a “no consultation” agenda in relation to detention centres to house the increasing number of asylum seekers.
Mr Entsch says the dumping of detention centres in communities throughout Australia, such as Weipa in Far North Queensland and most recently Inverbrackie in Adelaide Hills and Northam in Western Australia unannounced, is just not on.
“The latest announcement of more detention centres in Western Australia and South Australia being dumped in people’s backyards without consultation is totally unacceptable. The people of Australia deserve better, they deserve an upfront and consultative approach, not a deceitful, dictatorship with complete disregard for the Australian people,” said Federal Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch.
Mr Entsch said the recent protests from concerned residents in Adelaide Hills are totally understandable.
“People like to have input about what happens in their town and they do not like to be dictated to or lied to. The outrage any community is feeling as result of the Gillard Governments ‘no consultation’ approach is completely understandable,
“The reality is more beds won’t stop the boats. The announcement of yet more beds is a further admission of the failure of Labor’s border protection policies,” he said.
Mr Entsch said the Weipa community are still coming to terms with the fact that they were lied to during the Federal Election about the RAAF Scherger Base being converted into a detention centre for asylum seekers.
“The people of Weipa may very well have decided that there were benefits of housing the asylum seekers in their town, but the point here is that they weren’t given the opportunity to decide or have any input into the matter. More to the point, they were blatantly lied to,
“What kind of Government is this one that lies to the people and refuses to consult with them. I am sure this is not what the people of Australia expect from their Government.
“The preliminary work on the Scherger Base in Weipa commenced during the Federal Election campaign and was shrouded in secrecy. The Weipa locals got wind of it and they asked questions and were told that it was nothing more than a rumour and not to worry about it,” said Mr Entsch.
In 2010, 106 boats have illegally arrived carrying 5,260 people. There have been 20 boats arrivals since election day.