‘Unacceptable’: Dutton slams Origin inconsistency
Peter Dutton has lashed out at Queensland's Premier for allowing a packed crowd at the State of Origin while restricting funeral attendance.
Almost 50,000 people packed out Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday to cheer on Queensland's win in the series decider.
Last week, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced caps on sporting crowds would be lifted from 75 per cent to 100 per cent, urging Queenslanders to "fill Suncorp and cheer our mighty Maroons on".
The game was attended by the world's largest sporting crowd since COVID-19 was declared a pandemic in March.
Attendances for funerals in Queensland are limited to 200 people.
Mr Dutton, the federal Home Affairs Minister, said although he supported the easing of restrictions for sporting events, maintaining restrictions on funerals was "unacceptable".
"Funerals are a once-in-a-lifetime chance to show respect to a loved one, and people can't travel up from Sydney to support the family in that circumstance," he told 2GB Radio.
"If it's OK for the Premier to allow tens of thousands of people to sit next to each other at a football match, how does she justify not allowing someone to go to the funeral of their mother or son? It's just unacceptable.
"She's got people scared at the moment. It's delivering her a political benefit, but it's not done on the basis of health advice, and it never has been."
In September, a Brisbane funeral sparked a war of words between the Prime Minister and Premier.
Ms Palaszczuk faced outcry after a Canberra-based woman was initially refused an exemption from hotel quarantine, preventing her from attending her father's funeral in Brisbane.
Scott Morrison demanded Ms Palaszczuk allow the woman to attend the service.
She was eventually granted an exemption but was forced to attend in full PPE gear and under police guard. She was not permitted to have any contact with her mother or 11-year old sister.
Although accepting mourners have "have had to go through a lot recently", the Premier accused Mr Morrison of "bullying" her and politicising the issue.
"To use the tragedy of this personal family is disgusting," she told parliament.
"The last thing I would want to happen is to have an outbreak at a funeral, and by definition there are always older people who attend funerals."
Originally published as 'Unacceptable': Dutton slams Origin inconsistency