The House of Assembly met briefly yesterday January 13 and passed the Disaster Management Act (2021), which essentially means the approved bill will be moving to the Governor’s Office for assent.
All eyes will be on the Governor’s Office once the bill is sent there as Governor Augustus Jaspert didn’t assent the last two bills before him — the Cannabis Licensing Bill and the Drugs (Prevention of Misuse) Amendment Act 2020.
However, Governor Jaspert’s term is set to end early this year, so it’s unclear whether he will be the one to give assent to the law.
The Disaster Management Bill proposes to shift the power of control from the governor to the territory’s Premier and his government during times of disaster.
In 2020, it took centre stage in local politics when different factions of the government debated whether the governor or Minister of Health should lead the territory’s response to the ongoing COVID