Leader of the Opposition, Delia Lawrie, said that in an act of self-preservation, Chief Minister, Adam Giles, was forced to accept the resignation of Dave Tollner.
“It is disappointing that this incident was not dealt with appropriately immediately after it had occurred,” Ms Lawrie said.
“Adam Giles has defended the inexcusable and unacceptable behaviour of Dave Tollner for days and it was only after significant public outcry and his imminent dumping by the Parliamentary wing on Monday that the Deputy Chief Minister fell on his sword.
“This was action motivated by preservation not by what is right.
“Dave Tollner should have been sacked immediately.”
Ms Lawrie said the cracks are showing in the CLP Government.
“There are obvious deep divisions in the CLP Government that have been brought to a head by this scandal,” Ms Lawrie said.
"Territorians are now speculating on who will be Deputy Chief Minister and how long that will last before Dave Tollner launches a bid to return to Cabinet.
"The CLP are a shambles and the worst Government the Territory has ever had.”
Media contact: Cathryn Tilmouth 0427 500 667
Opposition Leader, Delia Lawrie, says Chief Minister, Adam Giles’, Government is in crisis as a result of his inability to bring an end to the Tollner homophobic rant affair.
“The CLP wing meeting on Monday is now looming as a showdown between the MLA’s who want Dave Tollner out and Adam Giles who appears incapable of enforcing basic community standards,” Ms Lawrie said.
She said the CLP Member for Goyder Kezia Purick reflected the mood of many when she wrote on Facebook “Oh so it is now, oh poor me David, I am the victim? Give me a break.”
“While many Territorians are saying enough is enough and our society has no place for leadership that condones discrimination and offensive slurs we see Adam Giles more interested in protecting his mate than enforcing workplace norms and sending a message that discrimination will not be tolerated," Ms Lawrie said.
A chorus of commentators from the Anti-Discrimination Commissioner to gay rights advocates and the general public were outraged that Mr Tollner’s homophobic and abhorrent comments to a Ministerial staffer had gone unpunished.
“On talkback radio yesterday callers were speaking with one voice and were ashamed that nothing had been done," Ms Lawrie said.
“It’s making national news and the rest of the country is looking at the Territory and wondering why this behaviour is being accepted.
“I am appalled that this government puts itself before the care of so many in our community who deserve a message that any discrimination is intolerable."
Leader of the Opposition, Delia Lawrie, today said that Territorians are appalled by the homophobic rant the Deputy Chief Minister, Dave Tollner, unleashed on a Ministerial staffer, and is calling on the Chief Minister to sack him.
“Chief Minister, Adam Giles, is failing another test of leadership by trying to sweep the unacceptable actions of Dave Tollner under the carpet,” Ms Lawrie said.
“Offensive homophobic slurs are not acceptable in our society – especially from a Deputy Chief Minister.
“Territorians should be able to go to work feeling safe from bullying and persecution based on their race, religion or sexuality.
“In any other workplace an incident of this nature would result in the offender being sacked.
“These standards need to be applied to Members of Parliament and the Chief Minister needs to sack Mr Tollner from his position as Deputy Chief Minister.”
Ms Lawrie said this is not the first time Adam Giles has failed to appropriately discipline a minister following reprehensible behaviour.
“Adam Giles needs to show that there is no tolerance for discrimination and bullying and sack Mr Tollner.”