The Hotel Quarantine Board of Inquiry Chairperson, Jennifer Coate has today confirmed the Inquiry is not a court and recognised what the community has known all along, there is nothing stopping Daniel Andrews, Jenny Mikakos, Martin Pakula and Lisa Neville from giving full, honest and truthful answers to the decisions they made and what they knew when and where regarding this fiasco.
Board Chairman Coate today said:
“This Board of Inquiry is not a court. 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.
With the delay in public hearings and the Inquiry report date now delayed until 6 November 2020, Daniel Andrews must come clean about his knowledge of the botched Hotel Quarantine program. When Daniel Andrews is asking Victorians to work together, the least he can do is be honest about how this disaster, the largest public policy failing in Victoria’s history, came to pass.
Further comments from Chairperson Coate about the wide claims of privilege with regards to the documents lodged with the Inquiry by the Andrews Government also begs the obvious question, what is Daniel Andrews hiding and why is he seeking to conceal the truth?
The Hotel Quarantine fiasco and the spread of COVID-19 it facilitated is costing lives, billions in lost economic activity and causing immeasurable angst and stress in the community. Daniel Andrews needs to recognise the loss his mismanagement has caused and come clean with the facts. The time for ducking, dodging and obfuscation is over.