Twitter is awash with hashtags from Australians angry about climate inaction asking about where prime minister Scott Morrison is.
This morning, Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg confirmed on Channel 9’s Today show that Morrison was “overseas with his family”.
The political leader has taken time off with his wife and children, making it his first overseas holiday after he travelled to Fiji after the May federal election.
Related story: Someone just paid $10,200 to have a beer with Scott Morrison
Rumours swirled that he and his family had left for Hawaii, but the prime minister’s office has refused to disclose his location.
Where's the Prime Minister? We just confirmed with the Deputy PM's office that he's acting PM until at least Thursday. Have they noticed the country is on fire? We have heard rumours @ScottMorrisonMP is in Hawaii #ClimateEmergency— David Shoebridge (@ShoebridgeMLC) December 16, 2019
“He’s having a well deserved break, and obviously it’s been a very busy year. He’ll be back at work shortly, and then he’ll be off to India, leading a delegation to advance Australia’s interests,” Frydenberg said.
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack will be taking the reins in his absence.
Some Australians are angry about Morrison’s decision to take time off, with #FireMorrison, #WhereTheBloodyHellAreYou, #wheresscomo and #NotMyPM trending on Twitter on Tuesday.
This is on top of the hashtags that have been trending for weeks, such as #ClimateEmergency and #bushfires.
Jim Pembroke pointed out that Morrison was probably not holidaying where the bushfires were.
Mr Morrison’s office insists claims he is holidaying in Hawaii are “wrong” while refusing to disclose his location...— 💧Jim Pembroke (@Jim_Pembroke) December 16, 2019
We can be fairly confident he is not holidaying in the Blue Mountains.#MorrisonFires #climatechange #auspol pic.twitter.com/QUSJt1DgJH
Twitter user @kaz_neena simply asked: “What leadership?”
Emily Rose tweeted: “AUSTRALIA IS BURNING!!”, adding that “something needs to be done now otherwise [the bushfires are] going to get worse”.
#FireMorrison AUSTRALIA IS BURNING!! wildlife is dying, entire ecosystems are being wiped out, homes are being destroyed and people are DYING!!!! while our prime minister goes oh holiday!! something needs to be done now otherwise it’s going to get worse pic.twitter.com/iwkbQrziQp— 𝓔𝓶𝓲𝓵𝔂 𝓡𝓸𝓼𝓮 (@livingouterspce) December 16, 2019
School Strike 4 Climate, the Australian youth movement inspired by Greta Thunberg, also chimed in on the debate.
Greens NSW MP David Shoebridge also said that Morrison had an “obligation to stick around and sort it out”.
“But this guy’s just in denial … on holiday … in denial,” he tweeted.
When the country you lead is on fire you have an obligation to stick around and sort it out. Or at least put the right policies in place before you clock off. But this guy’s just in denial ... on holiday ... in denial. https://t.co/GsYyk8PmyK— David Shoebridge (@ShoebridgeMLC) December 16, 2019
Don’t really care that the PM is on leave.— Matt Burke (@matttburke) December 16, 2019
It’s not like he was doing anything useful here.
But it’s not just the public criticising Morrison. On Monday night, Emergency Leaders for Climate Action – a coalition of 29 former senior emergency service leaders – called for greater political leadership on climate change.
"Our leadership is asleep at the wheel. In fact, in some areas, I think it's on life support,” former ACT Emergency Services Authority commissioner Peter Dunn told reporters in Sydney on Monday.
Emergency Leaders for Climate Action is pushing for a national emergency summit to be held at the end of bushfire season.
So far, more than 700 homes and 2.7 million hectares have been ravaged by the bushfires this fire season, and six people have died, according to the Daily Telegraph.
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