True to form, Barnaby Joyce released the latest quarterly performance report for the Australian Pesticides & Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) late on Friday afternoon. Timely transparency is not his strong suit.
The APVMA’s capacity to do its vital work has been in freefall since Barnaby Joyce announced his forced relocation of the Authority from Canberra to Armidale in his own electorate. Farmers, veterinarians and all users of products which require APVMA approval are the losers.
Human health is also being put at risk. In a week where the word “bizarrely” describes the normal, the temporary CEO announced a review to determine why the APVMA is doing so badly. It’s an insult to the few regulatory scientists and lawyers who haven’t yet flown the coop.
This is an untenable situation, we have Joyce continuing to put his own political interests ahead of the national interest, yet the Prime Minister does nothing. I remind the Prime Minister that he told us he was a “strong leader”. Strong words must be followed by strong actions.
It’s time for the Prime Minister to pull his deputy into line.