Barnaby Joyce must now tell the truth, following his earlier claims that the Queensland Government had recommended the purchase of low reliability water entitlements from Eastern Australia Agriculture.
He must also agree to release his handwritten notes, which were redacted on the documents released under Freedom of Information, or explain the basis on which those notes should remain unpublished.
The Guardian’s report today casts serious doubt on the veracity of Mr Joyce’s earlier claim, made to the ABC’s Patricia Karvelas, that the sale had been recommended by the Queensland Government:
Joyce: “Why did the Queensland Government recommend it to us? Are they morons? Were they asleep?”
He later said: “I didn’t want to buy it. It was recommended to me by the Queensland Labor Government”
The report shows the Queensland government had made a different recommendation, which Mr Joyce’s own department supported.
The report also says:
“The alternative approach appears to have originated in the federal department some time in late November. Handwritten comments by Joyce have been redacted.”
Following this report, Mr Joyce must now come clean as to how the idea originated, and about his involvement in the decision to purchase the water entitlements at the “record” price of $80 million from a company with links to a fellow Liberal National Government Minister.
FRIDAY, 7 JUNE 2019