Scott Morrison’s office won’t confirm the Prime Minister’s whereabouts this week, as an approaching heatwave threatens to intensify the bushfire crisis.
Well, Prime Minister Scott Morrison is certainly copping some heat today. The PM appears to be on a family holiday at an undisclosed overseas location, and Australians are not impressed.
Rumours about Morrison's location began to circulate on Monday, after Greens MP David Shoebridge tweeted suggesting that the Prime Minister is currently in Hawaii.
The Feed reached out to the Prime Minister's office for some clarification. A spokesperson refused to say whether Scott Morrison is on holiday, where he currently is, or when he'll be back.
Morrison's office did tell The New Daily that Nationals leader Michael McCormack will act as Prime Minister until Thursday, but said that claims Morrison is holidaying in Hawaii are "wrong". It's understood that the Prime Minister is indeed on a holiday somewhere at present.
In the absence of clear information about this country's leadership, Australians have taken to social media to voice their frustration.
#WhereTheBloodyHellAreYou, #MorrisonFires, "Hawaii" and #WheresScotty were all trending on Twitter in Australia this morning.
And sure, even Prime Ministers are entitled to a holiday, just like everyone else.
But the man responsible for Australia's climate policy is missing in action in a week where the country looks like this:
The Australian School Strike 4 Climate plans to gather outside the Prime Minister's house in Kirribilli this Thursday to ask "where the bloody hell are you Scott Morrison?".
The event, funnily enough, was actually planned and named before Scott Morrison left the country, and was meant to refer to Scott Morrison's metaphorically absent leadership during the bushfire crisis.
Last week, Morrison rejected calls for increased assistance for firefighters, and said that volunteer firefighters "want to be there".
The School Strikers told The Feed they plan to go ahead with Thursday's protest regardless.
"It's incredibly disappointing to hear reports the Prime Minister is overseas holidaying while Sydney suffers from bushfire-related air pollution and bushfires and drought continue to ravage our country," said Liora Ballin, a mother of two and spokesperson for Australian Parents for Climate Action.
"Our future is going up in smoke. We urgently need bold, urgent climate action including fast-tracking 100% renewable energy with investment in a just transition for coal-affected workers and communities."
Earlier today, former fire and emergency services chiefs from around Australia also held a press conference calling for leadership on the climate crisis.
"We're here because of the continuing bushfire crisis, and also because of the leadership vacuum in Canberra" former Fire and Rescue NSW Commissioner Greg Mullins said.
"Here in NSW the fires are totally unprecedented. More country has been burned, more homes have been lost -- three times more homes lost than our worst previous fire season in history -- and the fires are still burning. We have a heatwave coming, who knows what that will do? And the driving force behind this is climate change."
"In our decades of service we've seen Australia become drier, hotter, and extreme weather conditions become far more severe. We've asked the Prime Minister repeatedly to meet, he's declined to do that."
Mullins said the group had provided other government ministers with a list of suggestions, but called for an emergency bushfire summit after this summer's bushfire season is over. He and other fire chiefs urged Scott Morrison to show up.