The Minister for Outdoor Sport and Recreation, Sonya Kilkenny has raised further concerns that the Andrews Labor Government intends to cancel future duck seasons by refusing to even answer if she supports duck hunting.
In an exchange during this week’s Public Accounts and Estimates Committee (PAEC) hearings, The Nationals Member for Gippsland South posed the straightforward question to the Minister, “Do you support duck hunting?”
“I am disappointed but not surprised that the Minister failed to answer this simple question,” Mr O’Brien said.
“Instead, her Labor colleagues on the committee came to her rescue and the Labor Chair bizarrely ruled the question out of order. It’s akin to saying the Minister for Racing shouldn’t be asked if he supports racing.
“As the first Minister for Outdoor Sport and Recreation, it is extraordinary that the Minister was not willing to throw her support behind a legal outdoor past-time that has been enjoyed by a large percentage of Victorians for generations.”
Mr O’Brien also asked the Minister if the one-year funding allocation for the Game Management Authority in the budget was an indication that duck season would not continue beyond 2023.
“The Minister again duck-shoved my question and refused to confirm if a 2024 duck season will go ahead.
“This is a government led by a Premier who erroneously said that in the 2022 duck season there are a “number of incidents” of bag limit breaches when in fact there was only one out of 979 checks.
“The GMA has now released compliance data for the 2023 season which shows just two hunters of 981 checks breaching bag limits. This is in contrast to 15 offences detected among 415 protestors engaged with.”
During the hearing GMA officials confirmed that tests on some ducks delivered to the Premier’s office by protestors could not find evidence they had been shot.
“It’s just further proof that anti-duck hunting activists will do anything to advance their cause, even if it means misleading the public.”