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Thursday, 24 June 2021
Page: 48

Mr ZAPPIA (Makin) (13:48): Earlier today the chaos within the coalition government was on full display. There is disunity not just within the National Party but also between the two coalition partners. The attempts by National Party members, last night in the Senate and today in this House, to ambush their coalition partner—as well as the state governments of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia—by attempting to sabotage the Murray-Darling Basin Plan were an act of betrayal unprecedented during my time in this place. It was a desperate tactic and a direct attack on South Australia, which in 2012 argued for and, on the back of scientific evidence, secured an additional 450 gigalitres of water to be returned to the Murray-Darling Basin.

The Nationals need to end their obsession with South Australia's water allocations and with the Lower Lakes, which they keep raising in this place, time and time again. They must stop distorting the facts, as we heard last night and again today, and accept the science. And the Prime Minister must ensure that control of the Murray-Darling Basin does not ever rest with the Deputy Prime Minister. His failure to do so will show that he does not care about South Australians.