Back in August last year Premier Daniel Andrews has reportedly compromised on his plan for a 12 month extension to Victoria’s state of emergency as critics slam it as undemocratic. But 6 months later he is able to push the bill through
Police and Australian Defence Force officers patrol Docklands in Melbourne during the city’s stage 4 lockdown. Picture: David Crosling/NCA NewsWireSource:News Corp Australia
“I can’t guarantee that at the end of 12 months, you wouldn’t still need some rules.
“That’s not designed to frighten people, that’s just a statement of fact.”
A research paper on the Victorian parliament website noted that emergency powers enabled the state to “act outside the constitutional norms”.
“By their nature, then, emergency powers raise vexing questions about balancing security with individual freedom,” the paper noted.
“As has been the case with COVID-19, the exercise of emergency powers also often raises questions about ministerial accountability and decision-making.”
However, the paper noted that constitutional law experts had observed that while the powers provided the potential for authoritarian rule “such powers are terminated with the restoration of normalcy”.