Boyup Brook farmer calls Premier’s response to live export ban ‘the right thing’ despite it being ‘too late’
A local farmer has said WA Premier Roger Cook’s comments on the live sheep export ban being an “unnecessary burden” and saying Prime Minister Anthony Albanese “should reconsider” the ban, was “too little too late” but it was good that he was “finally standing up and doing his job”.
Boyup Brook farmer Charles Caldwell said the Premier’s response to a report, stating the phase-out’s economic damage could cost more than $128 million in the Wheatbelt, was “too little too late”, for the impact it has had on WA farmers.
“My description would be too little too late, and he should have made that statement when he first became Premier,” he said.
“He’s been dragging this on and should have said this months ago, and not when the policy has already caused issues for farmers.”
Mr Caldwell said despite the Premier’s response coming “too late”, he was “doing the right thing”.
“It’s good that he’s finally standing up and doing his job, to represent WA sheep farmers, because it’s the right thing to do and he should make it clear that he supports WA farmers,” he said.
“He’s finally doing the right thing.”
Mr Caldwell said the Labor Government should have thought more about the consequences of the policy and the implications for farmers.
“It takes an emotional toll on farmers, selling sheep at a loss, and the financial pain they’ve dealt with, trying to support their families and businesses,” he said.
“They would have saved everyone financial uncertainty and burden if they’d considered the financial and social impacts on people when they rolled out the policy, rather than after the policy had caused issues for farmers.”
He speculated that the plan to phase out live exports was an attempt for the Labor party to avoid losing seats.
“At the end of the day, they didn’t want to lose seats to the Greens in the Sydney and Melbourne electorates,” he said.
“Their policy is not based on science, they’ve just looked at polling and thought they might retain seats and not lose them to Greens.”
He praised the Nationals and Liberal parties for vowing to scrap the policy if the Coalition won in the next election.
“It’s great and positive that Nationals and Liberal have vowed to shut the policy if they’d win,” he said.
“I want to see the WA Premier to take it further than words and shut this policy down.
“He’s the Premier, he can take some leadership and shut this down and stop the Labor Government from this ill-thought out plan and look after West Australians and stand for them.”
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