Australia’s PM is under increasing pressure to make a decision on the embarrassing debacle surrounding Novak Djokovic.
The World No. 1 tennis player’s visa was cancelled despite his claims he was granted a medical exemption and allowed to enter the country to play in the Australian Open.
In a shock decision, the decision to cancel the star’s visa was quashed in the Federal Court on Monday.
Within hours, Immigration Minister Alex Hawke confirmed he was weighing up whether to use another mechanism to cancel the visa and deport Djokovic.
The whole debacle was slammed by Opposition leader Anthony Albanese on Tuesday, who accused Mr Morrison of always waiting for problems to become a crisis.
“The fact is that this has been botched completely by the Australian government,” Mr Albanese said.
“It’s been botched because the Australian government is led by someone who always waits for a problem to become a crisis before they act.”
Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce conceded he misread the situation.
Mr Joyce said he thought it would have been “game, set, match” for Djokovic to be deported.
“I got it wrong, I thought he’d be game, set, match that he hadn’t been double vaxxed and he would have been asked to go,” he told reporters.
“But I got it wrong. So, I’m not going to pretend to be a solicitor again.”
Labor senator Kristina Keneally said the Morrison government needed to make a quick decision.
This comes after Nigel Farage British broadcaster and former politician) commented on the debacle:
“I mean, is Australia a country based on the rule of law, or is it a country where governments can exercise arbitrary power?” Farage said. “If that judgment this morning is overruled, what’s the difference between Australia and a banana republic?”
He said Australian authorities had used “really nasty tactics” against Djokovic, and called judge Anthony Kelly’s decision “the first really big victory” against “the big state, which has grown so much over the past two years of the pandemic”.
Britain’s former world tennis No 1, Andy Murray, was one of many critics, retweeting a video of Farage with Djokovic’s family in the player’s trophy room and telling him to:
“Please record the awkward moment when you tell them you’ve spent most of your career campaigning to have people from eastern Europe deported.”
This has since turned into a Twitter Spat with Farage having to defend his comments.
Farage vented: “I’ve had the double vaccine, I’m not an anti-vaxxer as some might want to call me.
“But the point is this even if you’ve been jabbed once, twice, thrice, four times as many in Israel are you can still catch this virus and you can still pass it on.
“So provided the unvaccinated person has got up to date tests and is negative, what is the problem?
“If they catch Covid they may well become much more seriously ill because I am convinced that if you’ve had the vaccine, you’ve got a degree of protection but it’s about us not discriminating against a very large group of people.”