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Base security failure endangers ADF personnel

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Shadow Minister for Defence Science, Technology and Personnel

Stuart Robert

Base security failure endangers ADF personnel


Over three years on from the foiled terrorist attacks at Holsworthy Army Barracks and the Labor Government has not even begun construction to improve security at Australia’s military bases. Shadow Minister for Defence Science, Technology and Personnel, Stuart Robert, said Labor’s lack of action was beyond scandalous and that Defence personnel and their families had every right to feel betrayed by the Government.

‘Apparently the foiling of a terrorist attack on one of our Army bases is not enough to spur this Government into action. That being the case, I shudder to think what is required to get this government to harden the security infrastructure at our bases,’ Mr Robert said.

‘I am deeply troubled by the Labor Government’s further postponement to infrastructure works that would increase the level of safety for our personnel.’

‘I urge the Prime Minister to immediately intervene, to reverse the current course of inaction and get this project moving.’

Mr Robert said recent reports made clear work had not begun, a contractor had not yet been selected to do the work and the tender for the work had been withdrawn within the last month. ‘This year’s $5.5b worth of Defence budget cuts has resulted in the further deferral of the Base Security Improvement Project to at least 2013/14,’ Mr Robert said.

‘Defence has confirmed that work won’t start for at least another 12 months, while industry sources have stated that when the work does begin, the package of work will be reduced in an attempt to save money.’

Mr Robert said the lives of our ADF personnel, whether they are serving overseas or at home, should not be endangered for the purposes of penny-pinching.

‘The Gillard Labor Government should be absolutely ashamed of itself for abandoning our troops and risking their safety within our military bases,’ Mr Robert said.

‘This situation is an absolute disgrace. The Government has effectively abandoned our Defence personnel.’

‘Our personnel are our most important Defence asset and they should be treated as such. The Coalition will not jeopardise the safety of our ADF personnel, whether they be at home or abroad.’