NSW Labor Leader, Jodi McKay call on Premier to commit to a full and open public inquiry

NSW Labor Leader, Jodi McKay has today called on Liberal-National Premier, Gladys Berejiklian to commit NSW to a full and open public Inquiry into the unprecedented bushfires sweeping across the State.

Ms McKay said: “Leadership isn’t just about responding to a crisis, it’s also about showing people a way through and giving them a path to certainty and healing.”

“That’s why Gladys Berejiklian must announce her support for a full wide-ranging public Inquiry.”

“In recent weeks I’ve had the opportunity to visit fire affected communities and hear directly from those who have lost their homes and livelihoods, as well as many volunteer firefighters.”

“In NSW right now, people are hurting, they’re confused and they’re angry. There are communities who feel abandoned, who feel left they’ve been left to fend for themselves during the fires and isolated in the aftermath.”

“With homes and schools destroyed, businesses brought to a standstill, over a billion animals killed, almost five million hectares of land burned, and the tragic loss of lives – NSW can’t claim that the overall management of and response to the fire season has been a success.”

“The people of NSW deserve to be heard by Gladys Berejiklian and her Liberals and Nationals. It would be a failure of leadership for Ms Berejiklian to commit to anything less than a full and open public Inquiry.”

“Earlier today even the prime minister indicated that while the federal government might call a royal commission into the fires sweeping the country, operational matters should be reviewed and investigated by the states.”

Ms McKay said that any Inquiry into the disastrous fires sweeping across the State must:

Be led by NSW Be independent from government, and open and transparent with the community Be open to the public to make submissions.Be conducted by experts, not on behalf of politicians Hold hearing in the communities affected by fires Answer whether NSW was ready for the bushfires, how they were handled and how we can speed up recovery and improve into the future And it needs to reckon with sober questions about the role climate change has played in the more frequent and severe weather conditions we’re experiencing now and will continue to experience