Labour and Greens war on farmers becomes Orwellian

The government passed under urgency the allowance for MPI officers to enter a farm, with no warrant or oversight and seize stock and assets.

MPI officers now have more powers than the Police or the SIS.

What is interesting is a review of Hansard. The Greens and Labour voted against the Search and Surveillance Act that allowed exactly this and required a report to the Solicitor General when the powers are used.??

MPI doesn’t even have that oversight. Quote:

Ministry for Primary Industry officers will be able to go on to farmers’ properties unannounced and without warrants and seize items without cause, says National Party agriculture spokesman Nathan Guy.

The Government introduced the NAIT Amendment Bill last Thursday, and passed it under urgency yesterday. The Bill makes changes to the Act which will allow for warrantless inspections of farms, clarifies animal movement requirements, and makes it an offence not to record animal movements.

While some industry groups have been quick to welcome changes to the National Animal Identification and Tracking Act (NAIT), the Government has come under fire for rushing through legislation to help tackle cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis.

Guy said that while some changes to NAIT were needed, Parliament had been “denied the opportunity to properly scrutinise Government amendments which may not be in the best interests of farmers”.

“Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has had months to introduce this Bill into Parliament, but instead he expanded wide-ranging search powers under urgency.

“Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) will be able to turn up to farmers’ properties without getting a warrant and seize anything they want, unannounced and without cause. End quote.

Looks like the government’s commitment to the provinces includes the creation of a new secret police force inside MPI.

The war against farmers has now gone furtive and sneaky.

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