Monday, 22 October 2007

Abetz promises what he can't deliver on Clarence River

It was reported in the media today that the Federal Minister for Fisheries and Forestry, Eric Abetz, has told the Clarence River Fishermen's Co-operative that "the Howard-Vaile Government will not - ever- build the dam" on the Clarence River [The Daily Examiner,Grafton,"Coalition, Labor rule out dam on the Clarence",22 October 2007,p.3].

Now Senator Abetz cannot offer such a guarantee into the future when John Howard has already signalled that he will not serve a full-term as Prime Minister if re-elected.

It is also passing strange that the senator would attempt to make this promise, when both Malcolm Turnbull and John Howard have verbally and in writing danced around the issue of Clarence water diversion in an effort to avoid saying the words "never ever".

John Howard's latest avoidance of a never-ever pledge occurred as recently as a fortnight ago, when he briefly visited the Clarence Valley.

In June this year Senator Abetz himself voted down a motion calling for the protection of the Clarence River.

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